Green Flag Award delight for district's parks and community groups

Community groups across North Kirklees are celebrating after several of the district’s parks and green spaces have been awarded Green Flags.

Tuesday, 19th October 2021, 7:00 am
The Friends of West End Park, Cleckheaton have received a Green Flag Award. Pictured from the left are chairwoman Helen Marsden with Oken, treasurer Ann Baxter with Mia, Jane Thompson, Margaret Atkinson and Ruth Dawkins

Wilton Park in Batley, Crow Nest Park in Dewsbury and Oakwell Hall Country Park in Birstall have all been awarded the international quality mark.

There were special community awards for the Friends of West End Park in Cleckheaton, Upper Hopton Community Association and East Bierley Village.

In addition, Oakwell Hall Country Park also received the much coveted Green Heritage Site Accreditation, supported by Historic England, for the management of its historic features.

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Gill Young, chairwoman of the Friends of Crow Nest Park, Dewsbury

Gill Young, chairwoman of the Friends of Crow Nest Park, said: “I’m delighted, it’s the 10th year we have got it.

“It’s a great credit to the park staff and the various community groups that come and contribute to the park.

“People have been very supportive during Covid. The pandemic has broadened the spectrum of people who use parks.”

Gill added that a celebration event will be held in the park in the near future.

Helen Marsden, chairwoman of the Friends of West End Park, said: “We are really pleased.

“It’s very much a group effort in terms of the park.

“I have taken on the baton from the former chairman, Martin Webster - he was a tour de force in terms of taking care of the park and keeping it spick and span.

“It’s a local park that was given to the people of Cleckheaton.

"It has a long history. It was a very neglected patch of grass, so being recognised as a park that’s worthy of the award is testament to everybody’s daily work to keep it as good as it looks.”

Helen added: "We are working towards hopefully starting on a new children’s playground, which are are looking forward to very much. We have got the final plans and there’s lots of buzz about the park.”

Coun Will Simpson, Kirklees Council's cabinet member for culture and Greener Kirklees, said: “This is wonderful news and really demonstrates the hard work and commitment of all staff involved during what has been a very difficult couple of years.

“During lockdowns our parks have been busier than they have ever been. This has meant operational staff on the ground have had to work doubly hard to keep our parks to the high standards we have come to expect.

“The fact that we have been able to achieve these awards is a credit to them all.

“I really hope our residents continue to enjoy our parks through the colder months of the year and help our parks staff in keeping them in pristine condition.”

Green Flag Award scheme manager, Paul Todd, said: “I would like to congratulate everyone involved in making the parks and greenspaces across Kirklees worthy of a Green Flag Award.

“To meet the requirements demanded by the scheme is testament to the hard work of the staff and volunteers who do so much to ensure these places have high standards of horticulture, safety and environmental management and are places that support people to live healthy lives.”

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