EIGHT of the Fylde coast’s parks and open spaces have been named among the best in the country.
Blackpool bagged six Green Flag Awards while Hawthorne Park and Wyre Estuary Country Park in Wyre also scooped the prestigious prize.
Fylde Memorial Arboretum and Community Woodland in Bispham is the latest area to impress the national judges.
It joins Cavendish Recreation Ground in Bispham, Louie Horrocks Recreation Ground and Watson Road Park in South Shore as well as Stanley Park and Salisbury Woodland on East Park Drive on the Green Flag list.
John Blackledge, assistant director for leisure and commercial services said the awards are a recognition of all the hard work that park staff, friends groups and volunteers put into each area.
He said: “It’s great news we now have six parks which have been accredited with Green Flag status. It is a testament to all the hard work that is put in by the team workers at the parks and I am glad they have been nationally recognised for that.
“It is particularly pleasing the Fylde Memorial Arboretum and Woodland has also been awarded.
“It just shows the high standards that our green spaces have and hopefully next year we will be celebrating even more awards.”
It was the seventh consecutive award for Wyre Estuary Country Park, which offers a network of paths for visitors to enjoy and now features a new £167,000 adventure playground and an improved Wyreside cafe.
Hawthorne Park in Thornton, which is run by dedicated members of a trust, was transformed from an under-used and overgrown open space into a cleaner, greener and safer children’s playground for tots to teens using £243,251.
The parks now also have the chance to receive a further award from the Green Flag Plus Partnership - the People’s Choice Award
Coun Lynne Bowen, cabinet member with responsibility for parks at Wyre Council, said: “It’s wonderful news, especially with our country park receiving seven in a row
“We see this as a fantastic accolade for the park’s committed staff and volunteers who all work tremendously hard to offer visitors an enjoyable experience and consistently high standards.”
The Green Flag Award Scheme is managed by the Green Flag Plus Partnership which is made up of Keep Britain Tidy, volunteer organisation BTCV and GreenSpace.
The award, which was set up in 1996, recognises well managed, high quality green spaces.
This year, 1,288 parks and green spaces were awarded the Green Flag and Community Award.
n To vote for the People’s Choice Award log on to the Green Flag Award website on www.greenflagaward.org.uk