Four Three Rivers parks recognised with Green Flag status
14th October 2021
Four parks across Three Rivers district have been awarded Green Flag accreditation – the national benchmark for publicly accessible parks and green spaces.
Rickmansworth Aquadrome, Chorleywood House Estate, South Oxhey Playing Fields and Leavesden Country Park have all received the award, which is judged by green space experts. They assess sites using eight criteria, including horticultural standards, cleanliness, environmental management and community involvement.
In addition, Leavesden Country Park has achieved the Green Heritage Site Accreditation –the first park in Three Rivers to do so. Green Heritage Site Accreditation, supported by Historic England, is given in recognition of achieving the required standard in the management and interpretation of a site with local or national historic importance.
Leavesden Country Park also attained the maximum overall score for both the Green Flag Award and the Green Heritage Site Accreditation. The park, which has recently undergone significant investment to improve the visitor experience, was commended for landscape maintenance, the joining up of old and new, heritage trails and the “remarkably creative” way the site re-creates heritage assets.
The role of volunteers has been a vital part of maintaining Leavesden Country Park. Activities including bulb planting and pruning are regularly carried out by the Friends of Leavesden Country Park, whilst the Leavesden Hospital History Association has provided displays of artefacts and photos of the history of the Leavesden Hospitals and offer a programme of history walks and talks of the site.
The judges particularly highlighted the amount of consultation and participation by local volunteers, groups and schools and mentioned the Covid-19 stone snake created by local children and adopted by the park to form a permanent feature.
Cllr Chris Lloyd, Lead Member for Leisure, said: “I would like to thank all the council staff who have made achieving Green Flag status possible. I would recommend residents who have not visited to do so. I enjoy using all four parks.”
Cllr Keith Martin, Chair of the Council, added: “The health and well-being benefits of parks and open spaces have been particularly relevant over the past eighteen months that we have been facing the extraordinary challenge of lockdowns and restricted movement owing to the pandemic. Parks staff and volunteers have shown great dedication to ensure our green spaces are so well-kept all year round, and their hard work is recognised with the Green Flag awards.”
Launched in 1996, the scheme has now been running for 25 years. The Green Flag Award is managed by Keep Britain Tidy on behalf of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.
For more information visit: https://www.greenflagaward.org/