How is Lee Valley Regional Park Authority Funded?
The Authority is community focused and commercially driven and generates the majority of its income from commercial and business activities, maximising a range of opportunities in order to lessen the demand on council tax payers.
The rest comes from a levy on council tax payers in London, Essex and Hertfordshire – which equates to 90p per person per year. The ceiling for the levy is determined by a formula set out in “The Levying Bodies (General) Regulations 1992” which is adjusted annually to account for inflation.
The levy helps to keep Lee Valley Regional Park’s parklands maintained to a high standard and its venues as accessible as possible. It also ensures that the park remains a regional attraction offering unique mixture of nature, sport and leisure facilities to the people of London, Essex and Hertfordshire and beyond. It attracts around nine million visits a year. Around 80% of visitors are from London, Essex and Hertfordshire, with the remainder from other places both nationally and internationally.
Lee Valley Regional Park Authority has a statutory remit to develop and preserve leisure, recreation, sport and nature and so the money raised through the levy is directed to assets such as its eight Green Flag winning open spaces, Green Heritage Site and its sport and leisure venues.
Lee Valley Regional Park Authority’s Levy Settlement: 2023/24
Following agreement by the Authority’s Executive Committee and the full Authority on 19 January 2023, elected Members drawn from across the region have approved an increase of 9% in the levy for 2023/24. The total amount to be raised by the levy for 2023/24 has increased to £10.6 million
This amounts to 90p per head of population per year in the region. It was estimated at 81p in 2022/23. It is 34.1% of the maximum chargeable.
In deciding this year’s levy the Authority had to consider an incredibly challenging economic context alongside our statutory duty to create and continually improve a high quality, sustainable, regional visitor destination for the communities of London, Essex and Hertfordshire whilst remaining solvent and viable.
We are continuing to invest in opportunities for the vast range of communities the park serves. We are shortly to open a stunning new Lee Valley Ice Centre which will attract over half a million visits a year from across the region. Our plans for the coming decade include bringing a 200 acre site into public use as a new piece of Lee Valley Regional Park, new sports facilities at Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre, improvements to our green spaces and new visitor accommodation. Along with enhancing the Lee Valley Regional Park destination, these significant investments will generate additional income streams, which will strengthen the Authority’s long-term financial position.