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South Somerset country parks and nature reserves fly the flag as some of the country’s best parks and green spaces

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In a record-breaking year for the Green Flag Award, as the scheme marks its Silver Jubilee, Ham Hill, Yeovil Country Park and Chard Reservoir LNR are three of 2127 parks and green spaces celebrating success.

South Somerset District Council are raising three Green Flag Awards at Ham Hill, Yeovil Country Park and Chard Reservoir LNR.

The award is the international quality mark for parks and green spaces.

After 18 months, that have seen our parks and green spaces play a vital role for people through lockdowns as a place to relax, exercise and meet friends and family safely, the news that South Somerset’s countryside sites have achieved the Green Flag Award is testament to the hard work and dedication of the rangers and volunteers that make the green space a great space that everyone can enjoy.

Ham Hill has also achieved the much coveted Green Heritage Site Accreditation, supported by Historic England, for the management of its historic features.

Reed clearing with Yeovil Country Park volunteers

Reed clearing with Yeovil Country Park volunteers

Litter pick with Ham Hill volunteers

Litter pick with Ham Hill volunteers

Chard Reservoir Volunteer Group

Chard Reservoir Volunteer Group

Commenting on the news that South Somerset’s countryside sites have achieved the Green Flag Award standard, Green Flag Award Scheme Manager Paul Todd said: “I would like to congratulate everyone involved in making South Somerset’s countryside sites worthy of a Green Flag Award.”

“To meet the requirements demanded by the scheme is testament to the hard work of the staff and volunteers who do so much to ensure that these green spaces have high standards of horticulture, safety and environmental management and are places that support people to live healthy lives.”

Countryside Manager Rachael Whaites said, “Our country parks and nature reserves have always been treasured by our local communities, but we have seen an increase in visitor numbers during the last 18 months as more people have started to appreciate how important it is to have accessible, wildlife-rich green spaces on their doorstep. The rangers, volunteers and Friends groups work with such enthusiasm and dedication to continually improve our green spaces.  Retaining the Green Flag Award for the last consecutive 16 years is testament to how hard they all work and they should all be very proud of their achievements.”

“The rangers & volunteers are looking forward to hosting their two most popular events again this year; the Halloween Trail at Yeovil Country Park on Friday 29th October and the Bonfire at Ham Hill on Friday 5th November. More information about these events and our country parks and nature reserves can now be found on our brand new website www.visitsouthsomerset.com/explore.”

The Green Flag Award scheme, managed by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy under licence from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, recognises and rewards well-managed parks and green spaces, setting the benchmark standard for the management of green spaces across the United Kingdom and around the world.

A full list of Green Flag Award-winning parks and green spaces is available here

The Green Flag Award Scheme is run by the environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, under licence from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, in partnership with Keep Scotland Beautiful, Keep Wales Tidy and Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful. To find out more about Keep Britain Tidy, our campaigns and programmes visit www.keepbritaintidy.org.

Any green space that is freely accessible to the public is eligible to enter for a Green Flag Award. Awards are given on an annual basis and winners must apply each year to renew their Green Flag Award status. A Green Flag Community Award recognises quality sites managed by voluntary and community groups. Green Heritage Site Accreditation is judged on the treatment of the site’s historic features and the standard of conservation. 

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