We all have a favourite park and now’s the time to vote for yours

Vote for your favourite park in South Somerset and show how the UK loves parks.

The experts have had their say and in July three South Somerset District Council owned countryside sites were given a prestigious Green Flag Award.

Now, the Award Scheme is asking the nation to have its say and decide which parks and green spaces should receive the People's Choice Award for being the UK's favourites.

Yeovil Country Park, Ham Hill Country Park and Chard Reservoir were all awarded Green Flag status for 2018 and have a fun filled event lists for residents and visitors to enjoy.

Yeovil Country Park has seen the free Well Dressing event take place in Ninesprings alongside other popular events such as the Armed Forces Day celebration in the brand new extension to Yeovil Country Park. This new Riverside Park has also seen the creation of a play trail for younger visitors to enjoy and explore. Bat walks, woodland storytelling, woodland explorers, teddy bears picnic and photography workshops have all been enjoyed at the site throughout this year. And of course, National Play Day was also held on site.

Ham Hill Country Park has held a series of summer play schemes this year including Capture the Fort and Wild Food Café. Practical conservation management has been undertaken on the site restoring habitats for the endangered shrill carder bumblebee, whilst reptile and dormice monitoring has also been taking place with the help of volunteers. A fantastic new walking leaflet has been launched this summer by the Friends of Ham Hill.

Over at Chard Reservoir, the well-attended Chard Countryside Day was an experience for all to enjoy with many residents and visitors enjoying the free events. Drop in arts events have also been happening throughout the summer holidays. New information panels have been erected across the site which explain the wildlife and history of the site. Additional play items have also been added to the natural play zone for our younger visitors.

Whether you enjoy visiting a park or green space to play football, walk the dog, exercise or simply get away from the hustle and bustle, if you think your favourite deserves to be in the top 10 People's Choice then cast your vote.

All you have to do is go to www.greenflagaward.org find your park on the winners map and click the voting button. Once you've registered your vote, why not encourage others to get involved too through social media using the hashtag #PeoplesChoice.

Councillor Sylvia Seal, Portfolio Holder for Leisure & Culture at South Somerset District Council said, "The three Green Flag countryside sites in South Somerset all offer a wide range of fabulous opportunities for people to discover wildlife, learn about history and spend time together outdoors. The rangers have worked hard over the summer months, with their volunteers, to offer a range of fun, hands on sessions and free to access inspiring greenspaces that everyone can enjoy".

Voting is now open and closes 30 September, with the top 10 sites being announced on 16 October.

Paul Todd, Green Flag Award Manager said: "This year 1883 parks and green spaces met the tough standards demanded by our Green Flag Award Judges but we want to know which parks the UK public love the most.

"The People's Choice award is a chance to show how much your favourite park means to you. If it's worth shouting about, make your voice heard and vote now."

Paul Rabbitts Head of Parks, Open Spaces & Projects, whose Cassiobury Park was among the top 10 winners last year said: "Cassiobury Park is often referred to as the jewel in our crown here in Watford. We are immensely proud of it and we truly believe it is one of the finest parks in the country and are delighted it was voted as one of the top ten parks last year. We will certainly be hoping it is as popular again this year"