A plethora of policies are associated with place-keeping in different ways and in different contexts. These range from international treaties and national legislation (e.g. supporting the creation of National Parks) to locally enforced health and safety regulations (e.g. determining the choice of playground equipment) and maintenance practices (e.g. on-the-spot fines for littering). What is common to all, however, is that place-keeping is not statutory; there is no legal requirement for local authorities to provide their residents with good-quality open spaces. This important point highlights the need to explore the wider contextual factors contributing to this state of affairs to understand how place-keeping may, or may not, happen in practice.