This week, a record number of parks and green spaces collected a Keep Britain Tidy Green Flag Award.
Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust are delighted to announce that Cockington Country Park, Torquay, has been recognised by the Green Flag Award Scheme as one of the very best in the world. Cockington joins 16 other green spaces awarded recognition in Devon alone and is one of only 5 sites in the UK that have held the award since its launch.
Cockington is among a record-breaking 1,883 UK parks and green spaces that this week received a prestigious Green Flag – the mark of a quality park or green space. This is the 22nd Green Flag awarded to Cockington. An international award now into its third decade, the Green Flag is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible environmental standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent visitor facilities.
Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust is Torbay’s independent conservation charity and is responsible for the care and maintenance of Cockington Country Park. This care could not be achieved without the massive contribution made by a small army of local volunteers. The Green Heart Appeal is a dedicated fundraising project that has provided means to refurbish parts of the park including the stunning lakes, the Gamekeeper’s cottage, which is now home to the park’s voluntary trainee team, and The Linhay, which now serves as the Country Park Visitor Centre.
Damian Offer, Chief Executive of Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust said:
“We are delighted to have received the Green Flag Award for 22nd year running”.
“The award celebrates high-quality green spaces like Cockington. It is a great acknowledgement of the huge effort made by everyone involved in caring for this very special part of Torbay. We could not have achieved the Green Flag for 22 consecutive years without the generous help of Cockington’s friends and volunteers, for which we are extremely grateful”.
Hannah Worthington, Cockington Green Heart Access Officer said:
“The level of involvement and dedication from our volunteers continues to amaze me. We’re particularly lucky to have had a number of voluntary Trainee Rangers with us over the last one to two years who have brought so much energy and so many ideas to the Green Heart Project. They really have played such an important part in helping us reach the high standards that have led to Cockington gaining this year’s Green Flag Award. The trainees have helped to support our community volunteers, and vice versa – it’s always so good to see everyone enjoying the volunteering experience!”
The Trust’s voluntary trainee placement scheme is open to all and details of available positions are always listed on the Trust website. 90 % of the trainees, that complete the Trust programme, go into paid employment in their chosen sector, which has provided them with valuable experience, training, and access to practical qualifications.
Cockington has also received the much coveted additional Green Heritage Site Accreditation, a scheme supported by Historic England which acknowledges how the park’s historic landscape and buildings are celebrated and cared for.
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, with more Green Flags awarded this year than last year.”
“Each flag honours the thousands of staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to maintain the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award. We are proud to have so many wonderful green spaces in the UK for people to enjoy, and hope that next year, we award even more flags.”