14th August 2017

SIX of the city’s parks and green spaces have been recognised as among the very best in the world.

Blackbird Leys Park, Bury Knowle Park, Cutteslowe and Sunnymead Park, Florence Park, Hinksey Park, and St Sepulchre’s Cemetery in Oxford are among 1,797 spaces in the UK that will receive a Green Flag Award – the mark of a quality park or green space.

This international award, now in its third decade, is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible environmental standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent visitor facilities.

Councillor Linda Smith, Executive Board Member for Leisure, Parks and Sports said:

“We are absolutely delighted to receive the Green Flag Award for the 11th time.”

“We know how much quality green spaces matters to residents and visitors, and these awards celebrate the dedication to maintaining Oxford Parks to such a high standard.”

A Green Flag Award is given to a site which demonstrates a sound management plan, shows bosses understand their users, recognises what is unique about the setting and understands that it needs to reflect and respond to the changing needs of its users.

Oxford boasts a variety of parks across the city, including Cutteslowe and Sunnymead – which is the largest in the city.

It offers visitors a new splash feature, an orienteering course, three play areas, a miniature railway, skate park and an allotment.

Chair of the Friends of Cutteslowe and Sunnymead Park, Tim del Nevo, said:

“The park has been recognised for many years and we’re very pleased that we have got it again.”

“I’d be quite surprised if we weren’t to be honest – it is the biggest and best park in the city.”

On the other side of the city, Blackbird Leys Park is a nine hectares ‘green haven’ in the middle of the estate, with a tree-lined meandering brook and an open grass area.

The park was well recognised by the Green Flag Award and offers visitors the chance to play football, table tennis or bowls, build a sand castle in the sand pit, enjoy the zipwire and timber play, indulge in a game of cricket, use the fitness trail or even take a dip in the Leys Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool.

International Green Flag Award scheme manager Paul Todd said: “We are delighted to be celebrating another record-breaking year for the Green Flag Award scheme.

“Each flag is a celebration of the thousands of staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to maintain the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award.”

“The success of the scheme, especially in these challenging times, demonstrates just how much parks matter to people.”


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