Hyde and seek....
Life has been a little hectic recently. Not only am I marathon training but I also left my very comfortable job on Friday after 4 years for pastures new.
One of the first questions people have asked is where my new office is based. What tends to ensue is the following conversation:
- Person A ‐ ‘Where is your new office?’
- Me ‐’Hyde Park’
- Person A ‐ ‘Oh I know the area ‐ where exactly?
- Me ‐ ‘In Hyde Park’
- Person A ‐ ‘But what road?’
- Me ‐ ‘No, actually in the centre of Hyde Park’
- Person A ‐ ‘But there aren’t any buildings there?’
I stop the conversation there and instead give up explaining and smugly pull out my phone to show them a picture.
Nestled in the middle of Hyde Park is a small building called The Isis Education Centre at Th Lookout and that is my new place of work. I’m not going to lie I’m pretty smug about it. There is something special about being able to go for a cheeky jog around the Serpentine when you're a bit early for work! Some may say my previous office wasn’t bad ‐ in the listed buildings on the outskirts of Regent’s Park with a nice park view but this is something else and I feel incredibly lucky.
You may be questioning whether I picked the job solely on location but I will now move on to gloat a little about the job and the awesome charity I have found myself working for. They are called the Royal Parks Foundation and exist to raise funds and awareness to support the 8 Royal Parks of London, ensuring they maintain their magic and remain an amazing haven where Londoners can escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. I can’t begin to describe the amount of time I have spent in the parks ‐ from running to work through Primrose Hill or Regents Park to lazing away a Sunday afternoon looking for deer in Richmond Park. With Royal in the title, it is easy to assume that the parks are sufficiently funded, but government cuts mean this isn’t the case. I can’t imagine my life in London without the Parks and I want to help ensure future generations can also enjoy them!
Starting a new job is always intimidating ‐ walking up to the office I felt like a child on their first day at school. It is amazing how quickly you regress in these situations. But I had absolutely no reason to worry ‐ from the word go I was made to feel incredibly welcome. The energy and passion from everyone working for the charity was instantly recognisable. It is a small team, of only 17, but each person I met seemed genuinely passionate about the Parks ‐ be it from an educational perspective, a desire to engage the whole community so they can enjoy the parks or just a love for the great outdoors.
For the first time in a while I feel excited about going to work in the morning and getting stuck in. This is also helped by the fact that one of the perks of the job is getting to drive a golf buggy around the park, so beware!
On which note I should probably actually introduce myself! My name is Marion Buggins and I am the new Projects & Communications at the Royal Parks Foundation.
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