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Merthyr Tydfil named among country’s best green spaces

  • Categories : Press Release
  • 14 Oct 2021

Keep Wales Tidy has unveiled this year’s Green Flag Award winners – the international mark of a quality park or green space. 

The Flags will be flying at 3 parks and 1 cemetery; Cyfartha Park, Park Taff Bargoed, Thomastown Park and Aberfan Cemetery, in recognition of their excellent visitor facilities, high environmental standards, and commitment to delivering great quality green space. This is a great achievement for Merthyr Tydfil Council and all the volunteers who work tirelessly to maintain these beautiful spaces.

Councillor David Hughes, Portfolio Member for Neighbourhood Services, said: “I am delighted that three Council-managed parks and one cemetery have been honoured with these awards.

“With the addition of Garwnant Forest Centre, which is managed by Natural Resources Wales, Merthyr Tydfil now boasts five full Green Flag Awards; something we can all be very proud of.

“There are also 11 Community Awards this year for Merthyr Tydfil, all of which would have not been possible without the hard work and commitment of many of our local community groups and volunteers.

“I’d like to congratulate and thank everyone involved in achieving this.”

The 11 community awards were presented to Cilsanws Nature Reserve, Dowlais Community Centre, Dowlais Infants School & Community Garden, Gurnos Mens Project Community Garden, Muriel & Blanche Community Nature Garden, Penywern Top Pond and Pitwoods Park, Pontsticill Park, Pontsticill Village, The Hafod Community Nature Garden and Woodland Walk.

Councillor Declan Sammon, Deputy Mayor & Chair of Neighbourhood Services, Planning and Countryside Scrutiny Committee, said: "The pandemic has shown just how important green spaces are to our communities.

"It is fantastic to see so many small local groups throughout Merthyr Tydfil doing their best to improve their local areas and being rewarded for their hard work by achieving a Keep Wales Tidy Green Flag.

"These sites benefit the whole community, not only as places to enjoy and relax in but they also help with the physical and mental health wellbeing of volunteers."

248 parks and green spaces across the country have received the prestigious Green Flag Award and Green Flag Community Award – from country parks and formal gardens, to allotments, woodlands and churchyards.

The Green Flag Award programme is delivered in Wales by environmental charity Keep Wales Tidy, with support from Welsh Government. Independent green space experts volunteered their time in early autumn to judge applicant sites against eight strict criteria, including biodiversity, cleanliness, environmental management, and community involvement.

Julie James, the Welsh Government’s Minister for Climate Change, said: “Green spaces are vital for mental and physical well-being and throughout the pandemic we have seen how important these spaces have been for local communities.  

“Wales still holds more than a third of the UK’s Green Flag community sites and it is fantastic to see more places in Wales receiving Green Flag Award and Green Flag Community Award.  

“These landscapes play a vital role in delivering rich ecosystems and vibrant and resilient communities, and I congratulate all of the sites for providing excellent, year-round facilities and events for people in Wales.”

Lucy Prisk, Green Flag Coordinator at Keep Wales Tidy said:

“The pandemic showed us just how important high-quality parks and green spaces are to our communities. With more visitors than ever enjoying our green spaces, I’d like to congratulate the hard work of staff and volunteers who have maintained excellent standards at these sites.”

A full list of award winners can be found on the Keep Wales Tidy website

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