Flags flying for green spaces

The trustees of the Old Bakehouse Millennium Green in Morpeth with the Green Pennant Award they have been given for the 11th year in a row.  GM017584
The trustees of the Old Bakehouse Millennium Green in Morpeth with the Green Pennant Award they have been given for the 11th year in a row. GM017584

THE impressive awards-run continues for Morpeth’s green gems.

Both Carlisle Park and the Old Bakehouse Millennium Green have retained their honours in the national Green Flag Awards.

The scheme sets a benchmark for green spaces, with areas judged on eight criteria, including cleanliness, conservation, community involvement and sustainability.

It is the sixth-year running that Carlisle Park has achieved the standard, and the eighth time in nine years.

The Old Bakehouse Millennium Green has won a Green Flag Community Award, formerly a Green Pennant, for the 11th year in succession, and this year’s comes hot on the heels of victory in the Love Northumberland Awards for Best Urban Project.

Chairman of Trustees Val Stevens said: “It is lovely to get the award for the 11th time. I don’t think anybody else has managed to get it for that long.

“We do hope to get it each year and we work hard towards keeping the Green looking wonderful and trying to think of new ways to attract visitors. We want to involve the community as much as possible and more people are using the Green now, which is lovely.”

The trustees carry out regular maintenance of the garden and run events, while Morpeth Town Council supports the employment of a gardener. Schoolchildren also help out and next term Newminster Middle and St Robert’s First schools will spend even more time in the garden.

A free concert will be held at the Green on Sunday, from 2pm, offering a varied programme. Visitors are invited to take chairs along.

Carlisle Park is often dubbed the Jewel in Morpeth’s Crown, with its William Turner Garden, aviary, play areas, paddling pool, ancient woodland, picnic areas, tennis courts, bowling greens and skate park.

It is managed mainly by Northumberland County Council, while Morpeth Town Council is responsible for the paddling pool and skate park.

Town Clerk Gillian Turner said: “We’re delighted that the park has retained the recognition for the excellent work that is done by all the staff there.

“Morpeth just doesn’t stand still. Every year there is something new and it is evolving all the time. Some towns might get a bit stale, but there is always something exciting on the horizon in Morpeth.”

Six parks in Northumberland won Green Flags — in Morpeth, Hexham, Bedlington, Plessey Woods, Seaton Delaval and Ashington.

Northumberland County Council Board Member for Street Care and Environment Deirdre Campbell said: “Parks and green spaces are at the very heart of our communities and having six Green Flags awarded to our parks is a great credit to our county and to the hard work of the park staff and local volunteers involved in their management.”

• Anyone wishing to become a Friend of the Old Bakehouse Millennium Green should call 01670 515533 for information.