Vale of Glamorgan Council again excels in Green Flag Awards
THE Vale of Glamorgan Council has once again punched above its weight in the Green Flag Awards, emerging as one of the best performing authorities in Wales.
Judging body Keep Wales Tidy has given 10 sites maintained by the Council Green Flag status, the mark of a top-quality outdoor space.
Of the 22 Councils in Wales, including city authorities Swansea and Newport, only the much larger Cardiff has managed more than that total.
Cosmeston and Porthekerry country parks both received the accolade, along with Romilly Park, Alexandra Park and Windsor Gardens, Barry Island Seafront and Friars Point, Belle Vue Park, Central Park, The Knap Gardens, Victoria Park and Gladstone Park.
Elsewhere in the County, Barry Town Council-maintained Merthyr Dyfan Cemetery also gained a Green Flag, while 15 sites received Community Awards.
These include: Barry Community Garden, Bee Loud Glade, Birchgrove Woodlands, Cwmtalwg Local Nature Reserve, Elizabethan Orchard, Victoria Square, Goldsland Farm, Lanlay Orchard, Little Hill Brock Street, Nightingale Garden, Old Hall Gardens, Upper Orchard Field Wenvoe, Welsh Orchard Wenvoe, Wenvoe Community Orchard and Wenvoe Wild Orchard.
Cllr Kathryn McCaffer, Vale of Glamorgan Council Cabinet member for Leisure, Arts and Culture, said: “I’m absolutely delighted that the Vale has once again excelled in gaining so many Green-Flag parks. Given our resources compared to other authorities, this is a truly remarkable achievement and testament to the hard work put in by our parks staff. It is their commitment that keeps our green spaces looking fantastic all year around.
“I would like to add special thanks and congratulations to the volunteer and community groups who have also been recognised for their dedication and ongoing hard work.
“The standard required to achieve Green Flag status is extremely high and a great deal of effort is put in behind the scenes to ensure residents have so many fantastic outdoor areas to enjoy in the Vale.”
Parks must apply each year to keep their award, and winning sites are eligible to fly a Green Flag for 12 months.
The Green Flag Award programme is delivered in Wales by environmental charity Keep Wales Tidy, with support from Welsh Government.
Independent green space experts volunteered their time in early autumn to judge applicant sites against eight strict criteria, including biodiversity, cleanliness, environmental management, and community involvement.
Julie James, the Welsh Government’s Minister for Climate Change, said: “Green spaces are vital for mental and physical wellbeing and throughout the pandemic we have seen how important these spaces have been for local communities.
“Wales still holds more than a third of the UK’s Green Flag community sites and it is fantastic to see more places in Wales receiving Green Flag Award and Green Flag Community Award.
“These landscapes play a vital role in delivering rich ecosystems and vibrant and resilient communities, and I congratulate all of the sites for providing excellent, year-round facilities and events for people in Wales.”
Lucy Prisk, Green Flag Coordinator at Keep Wales Tidy said: “The pandemic showed us just how important high-quality parks and green spaces are to our communities. With more visitors than ever enjoying our green spaces, I’d like to congratulate the hard work of staff and volunteers who have maintained excellent standards at these sites.”
A full list of award winners can be found on the Keep Wales Tidy website.