Darlington celebrates as parks win Green Flag Award

Darlington celebrates as parks win Green Flag Award
14 October 2020

Record-breaking year as more than 2,000 green spaces across the country get international quality mark.

Today, parks and green spaces across the country will be raising their Green Flag Award with pride in a year when millions of people have seen the value of having great quality green spaces on their doorstep.

Among them will be South Park and West Park in Darlington, as the borough raises a Green Flag Award for the 14th year.

The Green Flag Award scheme, managed by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy under licence from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, recognises and rewards well-managed parks and green spaces, setting the benchmark standard for their management across the United Kingdom and around the world.

South Park and West Park are among more than 2,000 sites across the country to collect the award for 2020.

Councillor Andy Keir, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for local services, said:

“We’re delighted that South Park and West Park have once again received the Green Flag Award, it’s well deserved recognition of the hard work of our parks staff and the many volunteers who help look after them.

“Our parks and green spaces have proved even more important in recent months and I want to say a special thank you to everyone who has contributed to help keep South Park and West Park, as well as others, looking good and accessible to all.”

Commenting on Darlington’s success, Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton OBE said: “This year, more than ever, our parks and green spaces have been a lifeline and we know that millions of people have used them to relax, meet friends, exercise or simply escape for a short time.

“It is testament to the incredible dedication and hard work of parks staff and volunteers that, despite the challenges that went along with record numbers of visitors, [name of park/council] has achieved the highest international standards [add in names of parks if multiple awards] demanded by the Green Flag Award.”

South Park is a Victorian Park with a lake, aviaries, bowling green, café, play areas, skate park and bandstand.  It is host to a range of events and activities such as charity fun runs, proms in the park, fitness clubs and sewing club in the education centre.  South Park was the first park in Darlington and this year marks its 14th year as a Green Flag Award winner.

Officially opened in 2005, Westpark was the first new park in Darlington in 100 years and this is its sixth Green Flag Award. It is a modern park with a fusion of art and wild open space.  There are stone sculptures and poetry that are integrated with the natural beauty of the wildflower meadows, woods and wetlands.