Mousehold Heath scoops coveted Green Flag status for first time

Mousehold Heath has been awarded its first Green Flag. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Mousehold Heath has been awarded its first Green Flag. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

In a year when people have, perhaps, appreciated Norwich’s parks more than ever before - two of the city’s green spaces have been recognised with national awards.

Eaton Park. Pic: Sonya Duncan

Eaton Park. Pic: Sonya Duncan - Credit: Sonya Duncan

The 184-acre heaths and woods of Mousehold Heath have been awarded Green Flag status by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy for the first time, while Eaton Park has scooped the coveted status for the fifth year in a row.

The Green Flag scheme recognises and rewards well-managed parks and green spaces, setting the benchmark standard for their management across the United Kingdom and around the world.

Eaton Park and Mousehold Heath join more than 2,000 sites across the country to collect the award for 2020.

Matthew Packer, cabinet member for health and wellbeing at Norwich City Council, said: “The people of Norwich have always had a great love and pride for their parks and open spaces and perhaps, this year, that appreciation has been felt even more strongly.

Norwich city councillor Matthew Packer. Pic: Labour Party.

Norwich city councillor Matthew Packer. Pic: Labour Party. - Credit: Labour Party

“This is why it was a top priority for us in the city council to not only keep them open – out of recognition for the invaluable role they play in people’s physical, emotional and mental wellbeing – but also maintain their already excellent standard.

“Norwich City Council will continue to support and invest in its parks and open spaces across the city.

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“The work volunteers, friends groups and individuals do alongside us to keep, not just Eaton and Mousehold, but all our parks and open spaces, vibrant, and make them the very best they can be for all to enjoy, is absolutely remarkable and it’s important we show our thanks and support – we’re very grateful to you all.

“The Friends of Waterloo Park are worthy of an extra special mention for their dedication and I feel confident their efforts will be rewarded with a Green Flag next year.”

Keep Britain Tidy chief executive Allison Ogden-Newton OBE said: “This year, more than ever, our parks and green spaces have been a lifeline and we know that millions of people have used them to relax, meet friends, exercise or simply escape for a short time.

“It is testament to the incredible dedication and hard work of parks staff and volunteers that, despite the challenges that went along with record numbers of visitors, Norwich City Council has achieved the highest international standards for Eaton Park and Mousehold Heath demanded by the Green Flag Award.”

City Hall will join buildings and landmarks across the country, including the White Cliffs of Dover, the London Stadium in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and Salford’s Media City, in being illuminated green tonight in recognition of the awards.