Lewisham’s parks and green spaces have been awarded their highest-ever number of Green Flags, the award given to the very best green spaces in the UK.
The latest green spaces in Lewisham to be given prestigious Green Flag Community Awards are Garthorne Road and Dacres Wood, managed by Lewisham Council with the help of the Friends groups.
In partnership with local groups Lewisham Council has also successfully retained its three existing Community Green Flags for Grove Park and Devonshire Road nature reserves and Albion Millennium Green, as well as its sixteen Green Flags for other parks and green spaces in the borough.
The Green Flag Community Award recognises quality sites managed by voluntary and community groups. Any green space that is freely accessible to the public is eligible to enter for the annual Green Flag Awards, which are based on a set of robust criteria, including accessibility, community involvement, cleanliness and biodiversity.
Lewisham Council, in partnership with Glendale, manages 47 parks and 15 nature reserves in the borough – each with its own unique character and environment. The last 18 months have seen public green spaces play a vital role for residents as a place to relax, exercise and meet friends and family safely. Last year, the Council adopted a new Parks and Open Spaces Strategy, which aims to make the borough’s green spaces even better by improving community involvement, boosting biodiversity and getting residents – including young people – more involved in decision-making.
Cllr Patrick Codd, Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport, said:
“Gaining two more prestigious Community Green Flag awards is fantastic news for Lewisham. This achievement wouldn’t be possible without the huge contribution that Friends and volunteers of our nature reserves make. I would like to thank every single resident and community group involved in this effort for helping to give us all healthier and greener neighbourhoods.
“Our nature reserves are a key part of Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership’s new action plan, which the Council recently endorsed as part of our work to create a greener Lewisham for residents and wildlife. As an inner-city borough, we are very proud of the many nature reserves, parks and green spaces that have brought much needed happiness to our residents during the very challenging times of the pandemic.
“The news that two more nature reserves in Lewisham have achieved the Green Flag Community Award is testament to the hard work and dedication of the teams that make the borough’s green spaces sanctuaries that everyone can enjoy.”
Nick Lee, Treasurer of the Friends of Garthorne Road said:
“We are excited that Garthorne Road Nature Reserve has received the Green Flag Award. As volunteers who work to protect and develop it, and open it to others, we are pleased and proud to have received the recognition that the Award brings. We thank Lewisham Borough, the volunteers and committee members for the support that they give us in managing the Reserve.”
Paul Todd, Green Flag Award Scheme Manager, said:
“I would like to congratulate everyone involved in making Garthorne Road Nature Reserve and Dacres Wood 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 two nature reserves have high standards of horticulture, safety and environmental management and are places that support people to live healthy lives.”
The 16 Green Flag Award parks are:
Beckenham Place Park
Manor House Gardens
Green Flag Community Awards are:
Gathorne Road Nature Reserve
Dacres Wood Nature Reserve
Grove Park Nature Reserve
Devonshire Road Nature Reserve
Albion Millennium Green