COMMUNITIES AND LOCAL
GOVERNMENT News Release (178) issued by The Government News Network
on 17 July 2008
The best parks and
green spaces across the country will be announced today by
A record 743 green spaces across the country, all freely
accessible to the public, have received a Green Flag Award - the
national standard for quality parks and green spaces. Winners are
judged to be welcoming and well maintained with the support and
involvement of the local community.
Baroness Andrews personally commended the local community and the
volunteers whose efforts had transformed Bellingham Green from a
neglected corner of Lewisham into the community designed and
inspired area that has won the coveted green flag for the first time.
The Green Flags scheme is currently expanding nationally and
internationally - three parks in Northern Ireland, 1 park in the
Republic of Ireland, 5 parks in Scotland and 2 parks in Holland
have this year also received a Green Flag Award due to ambitious
This year's winners will be announced from Green Flag
Award-winning Bellingham Green, in an area of Lewisham highlighted
by government as a transformed area of regeneration, demonstrating
how residents working together with public agencies can transform
deprived neighbourhoods. The Green is vibrant, lively and has
significantly improved the livelihood and well-being of the local community.
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Baroness Andrews said:
"I would like to congratulate all those whose hard work has
resulted in this year's green flag winners. In our busy
modern lives, parks and green spaces are invaluable as areas where
young and old can come together to relax, exercise and play.
"Bellingham Green is a great example of this and shows just
how important green spaces can be for everyone in the community.
The regeneration of green spaces is just as important as the
creation of new ones and Bellingham Green is a shining example of
how we can take up this challenge and transform little used and
neglected areas into centrepoints of the community."
Paul Todd, Green Flag Award scheme Application Manager, said:
"The increasing number of Green Flag Award winning parks and
green spaces highlight the important role they play in bringing
people together and improving their quality of life.
Congratulations to all the management, staff, and in particular,
thousands of volunteers whose hard work and dedication has brought
this award of excellence."
Following today's announcement at 2.30pm, information on all
winners can be viewed at: http://www.greenflagaward.org.uk
There are many fascinating stories behind our award winning green
spaces - see below for examples:
How Bellingham Green became the hub of a reinvigorated community
Deal with developers establishes community park for all http://www.greenflagaward.org.uk/winners/case-studies/deal-with-developers-establishes-community-park-for-all/
Big garden project has great impact on community at High Woods CP
in Colchester http://www.greenflagaward.org.uk/winners/case-studies/big-garden-project-has-great-impact-on-community/
This year's winners will celebrate their achievements and
collect their flags at a major ceremony in Liverpool on Thursday
Photo opportunity available at 2.30pm at Bellingham Green in
Images are available of all award winning parks and
Notes to Editors
1. Bellingham Green was refurbished in 2003 to include lighting,
benches, a multi-sports court area, a young people's area,
garden area and under 5's play area. A Sure Start building
provides regular events to support parents and their children.
Judges' feedback from 2007: 'Bellingham Green feels like
the hub of community activity - a far cry from its previous days
as a no-go area and it has led other improvements in the area.'
2. The Green Flag Award scheme, launched in 1996, is managed by
the Civic Trust on behalf of Communities and Local Government and
the Green Flag Advisory Board which comprises founders of the
scheme, sponsors, winners and judges. It is sponsored by
Communities and Local Government, English Heritage, Natural
England and in Wales by the Countryside Council for Wales, the
Design Commission for Wales, Environment Agency Wales and the
Welsh Assembly Government.
3. Any green space that is freely accessible to the public is
eligible to enter for a Green Flag Award. Awards are given on an
annual basis and winners must apply each year to renew their Green
Flag status. A Green Pennant Award recognises quality sites
managed by voluntary and community groups. Green Heritage Site
accreditation is judged on the treatment of the site's
historic features and the standard of conservation. This year, 73
community run sites received a Green Pennant Award and 42 Green
Flag Award sites achieved Green Heritage Site Accreditation.
4. The Civic Trust is an independent, national charity, founded
in 1957. It works with people to promote thriving towns and
villages, developing partnerships between communities, government
and business to deliver regeneration and local improvement. It is
the umbrella body for 850 civic societies across the country,
representing over 250,000 individuals committed to improving and
caring for places where people live and work. http://www.civictrust.org.uk
News Releases: http://www.communities.gov.uk/newsroom