Sally Barney


I’ve been privileged to work within the Royal Parks since 2001 and there’s not a day goes by when I’m not reminded just how special these green spaces are and just how much they mean to London. To have 5,000 acres of woodland, lakes, grassland and meadow areas, reedbeds, and flowerbeds in the heart of a capital city is unique, and I’m so proud to be a part of their history – even if that’s just a momentary blip in their 500 years so far!

Helping create and shape a new charity has been an incredible experience. As our team has grown, I’ve also been lucky to be able to direct my energies into my passion for events. As Head of Major Events, I focus much of my energy to managing the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon. Now 9 years old, the Half Marathon is the 5th largest running event in the UK and has raised an incredible £25million for our charity and around 650 other UK causes.

No two days are ever the same here – one day I could be attending an Awards dinner, the next I could be waist deep in water helping to maintain a reed bed, the following day meeting our amazing sponsors or charity partners or developing a new strategy for our events.

Favourite quote? It’s a Chinese proverb: “Those who say it cannot be done, should not interrupt those already doing it”, which I think sums up the ethos of the Foundation quite well.

My favourite Park? I’ve worked for the Parks for a long time but have never been able to answer the question which is my favourite, as they’re all so different. I love the formality of St James’s against the wildness of Richmond Park, the views from Greenwich to the familiarity of Hyde Park where we’re based. I can’t imagine London without any of them!