Rugby keeps the Green Flags flying
FIVE of the borough's parks have been honoured with prestigious Green Flag Awards.
Caldecott Park, Newbold's Centenary Park and the 'pocket park' at Millennium Green have all retained Green Flag Awards, while the pocket park at Gladstone Green held on to its Green Flag Community Award.
And Jubilee Street Recreation Ground, where New Bilton Community Association has spearheaded a community growing project, was awarded a Green Flag Community Award for the first time.
Green Flag, the international benchmark for quality parks and open spaces, announced the 2022 award winners on Tuesday (26 July).
Organised by the environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, Green Flag works to raise standards in parks and green spaces across the world, promoting well-maintained and well-managed parks with excellent facilities.
Judges assess each park put forward for the award against eight strict criteria, including horticultural standards, cleanliness, sustainability and community involvement.
Caldecott Park has now secured its Green Flag status for 15 years in a row, while Centenary Park has made it a magnificent seven Green Flags on the trot.
Millennium Green and Gladstone Green have now achieved Green Flag status six years in a row.
But it was a first for Jubilee Recreation Ground, which was presented with a Green Flag Community Award after being nominated for the first time.
The community award recognises parks and green spaces which play a vital role in bringing the community together.
Working in partnership with the council, New Bilton Community Association has developed a community growing project, with volunteers and residents growing a variety of vegetables, together with pollinator-friendly plants and flowers.
Green Flag praised the council's management of the recreation ground and highlighted the community association's commitment to bring volunteers and residents together to make the most of the green space.
Sheela Hammond, chair of New Bilton Community Association, said: "The community association will continue to champion green spaces in the area knowing how important it is for the mental health and wellbeing of our community, and the nurturing of biodiversity locally.
"We are delighted we have received a Green Flag Community Award for our Jubilee community garden having put the effort in over a couple of years to achieve it.
"It's a second Green Flag for New Bilton following the success at Gladstone Green."
Cllr Kathryn Lawrence, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for operations and traded services, paid tribute to the council's parks and grounds team, volunteers and residents who all played a part in the borough's Green Flag success.
"The Green Flag Awards set the benchmark for quality parks and green spaces around the world, so we're delighted to have achieved five awards this year," Cllr Lawrence added.
"The council has a long-standing commitment to creating and maintaining quality parks and green spaces across the borough, but the community awards recognise the crucial role volunteers and residents play in helping keep our parks places we can all enjoy and be proud of."