THE GREEN flags are flying in Rugby once again, as five of the borough’s parks have achieved an international benchmark.
Caldecott Park has retained its Green Flag Award for the 15th year running, while Newbold’s Centenary Park was presented with its seventh consecutive award.
The ‘pocket parks’ at Millennium Green and Gladstone Green have now achieved Green Flag status six years in a row, respectively winning a Green Flag Award and a Green Flag Community Award.
And Jubilee Recreation Ground, where New Bilton Community Association has spearheaded a community growing project, was also awarded a Community Award after being nominated for the first time.
Working in partnership with Rugby Borough Council, New Bilton Community Association has developed a community growing project for volunteers and residents to grow a variety of vegetables, pollinator-friendly plants and flowers.
Green Flag praised the council’s management of the recreation ground and highlighted the community association’s commitment to bring volunteers and residents together to make the most of the green space.
Sheela Hammond, chair of New Bilton Community Association, said: “The community association will continue to champion green spaces in the area, knowing how important it is for the mental health and wellbeing of our community, and the nurturing of biodiversity locally.
“We are delighted we have received a Green Flag Community Award for our Jubilee community garden, having put the effort in over a couple of years to achieve it.
“It’s a second Green Flag for New Bilton following the success at Gladstone Green.”
Coun Kathryn Lawrence, the council’s spokeswoman for operations and traded services, paid tribute to the council’s parks and grounds team, volunteers and residents who all played a part in the borough’s Green Flag success.
She said: “The Green Flag Awards set the benchmark for quality parks and green spaces around the world, so we’re delighted to have achieved five awards this year.
“The council has a long-standing commitment to creating and maintaining quality parks and green spaces across the borough, but the community awards recognise the crucial role volunteers and residents play in helping to keep our parks places we can all enjoy and be proud of.”
Green Flag, the international benchmark for quality parks and open spaces organised by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, works to raise standards in parks and green spaces across the world, promoting well-maintained and well-managed parks with excellent facilities.
Judges assess each park put forward for the award against eight strict criteria, including horticultural standards, cleanliness, sustainability and community involvement.
The community award recognises parks and green spaces which play a vital role in bringing the community together.