Green flags flying at North Tyneside’s parks

Coun Eddie Darke, right kneeling, with parks staff and members of the Friends of Northumberland Park.

Coun Eddie Darke, right kneeling, with parks staff and members of the Friends of Northumberland Park.

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Staff and volunteers are celebrating as North Tyneside’s parks have today been awarded six prestigious Green Flags.

This year, the recently-restored Northumberland Park has also been acknowledged as one of the best parks in the country.

Northumberland Park, which recently underwent a £5million renovation funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and North Tyneside Council, joins Wallsend Parks, Benton Quarry Park, Marden Quarry Park, Killingworth Lakeside Park and The Rising Sun Country Park in the coveted awards.

In addition, the Friends of Brierdene, a residents-led volunteer group who manage their local green space in Whitley Bay, have once again retained the Green Flag Community Award.

Green flags are awarded annually by national environmental and conservation groups, led by Keep Britain Tidy, to outstanding spaces which have the highest possible standards.

Elected Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “I am absolutely delighted that North Tyneside’s parks have once again been recognised nationally for their beauty, their excellence and their community facilities.”

Coun Eddie Darke, cabinet member for leisure, culture and tourism, added: “Our beautiful parks and open spaces are green havens that have so much to offer. These awards are a testament to the hard work that is being invested by the council and our community volunteers to make sure they remain places that people want to come back to time and time again.”

Friends of Brierdene chairman, Peter Brown, said: “We are delighted that our coastal green oasis is again recognised for a prestigious Green Flag Community Award for the fourth year in a row. The Brierdene wildlife site is a place for all to enjoy providing something new and different to see every day of the year thanks to the ongoing work of our volunteers.”

Northumberland Park opened last year following the restoration project which saw historic and lost Victorian features restored and modern visitor attractions – including the Glasshouse tea-room, toilets and education space – added.

Improvements were also made to the watercourses and lake and new colourful borders and a medieval herb garden were planted with help from the New Friends of Northumberland Park and a successful gardening group.