Edinburgh parks: 38 green spaces in Edinburgh win Green Flag Awards from Keep Scotland Beautiful
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Environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful has announced 38 parks and green spaces in Edinburgh have been presented with a Green Flag Award, just under half of the total given out across the country.
Recognising the very best of our country’s outdoor areas, the International Green Flag Award acts as a benchmark for clean, safe and well-maintained parks and green spaces. Administered in Scotland by Keep Scotland Beautiful, the Green Flag Award supports the opportunities that our green spaces provide to enable exercise, improve mental wellbeing and provide safe spaces for play.
Edinburgh winners include Braidburn Valley Park and Harrison Park, which have both won for the 17th consecutive year, as well as The Lawn and Central Woodlands, managed by Heriot-Watt University, Royal Edinburgh Hospital, which is managed by NHS Lothian, and Costorphine Hill LNR Community Walled Garden, managed by Friends of Costorphine Hill.
The other Edinburgh recipients were Bloomiehall park, Burdiehouse Burn Valley Park, Craigmillar Castle Park, Easter Craiglockhart Hill, Fairmilehead Park, Ferniehill Community Park, Ferry Glen & Back Braes, Figgate Park, Hailes Quarry Park, Hermitage and Blackford Hill, Hopetoun Crescent Garden, Inverleith Park, King George V Park, Lauriston Castle, Lochend Park, London Road Gardens, Morningside Park, Muir Wood Park, Pentland Hills Regional Park, Portobello Community Garden, Prestonfield Park, Princes Street Gardens, Ravelston Woods, Rosefield Park, Saughton Park, Seven Acre Park, Spylaw Park, St Katherine’s Park, St Margaret’s Park, Starbank Park, Station Road Park and Victoria Park.
Jamie Ormiston, Senior Awards Officer at Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: “Congratulations to our 38 award winners in Edinburgh. Every park has a wide range of people visiting them and their requirements can vary. What is essential is that they are well maintained and provide a safe place for people to relax and have fun.
“Our award-winning parks have demonstrated they are worthy winners, meeting the criteria of the coveted international award. Receiving this prestigious benchmark recognises all the hard work that has gone into maintaining and managing these precious green open spaces.
“It is imperative that Scotland reconnects with the natural world if we are to fix the biodiversity crisis and these green spaces will provide a space for people of all ages to do that.
“Green spaces are so important for our physical and mental wellbeing and it’s fantastic to see such a wide range of parks and green spaces across the entire length of the country. I encourage everyone to make the most of them this summer.”
Culture and Communities Convener, Councillor Val Walker, said: “I am delighted that 38 parks around Edinburgh have been recognised by Keep Scotland Beautiful and their Green Flag Awards scheme. The scheme recognises the quality of parks and greenspaces, their benefits to communities and the hard work of managers, staff and volunteers who keep them ticking over.
“Here in the Capital we are truly spoiled for choice across the city when it comes to fantastic parks and green spaces. Each different space has a unique character and significance for the residents and visitors that it welcomes. As part of our Edinburgh's Thriving Greenspaces 2050 strategy we are committed to doing everything we can to safeguard, preserve and improve these spaces so that people can continue to enjoy them, and communities feel involved in how they are looked after.”
Robbie Fraser, Operations Manager for Landscape, Recycling and Waste at Heriot-Watt University, said: "We are delighted to have been awarded the Green Flag Award for The Lawn and Central Woodlands area for a twelfth consecutive year. We will be applying to extend the award to include the loch and surrounding area next year."
Tracey Mckigen, Services Director, Royal Edinburgh Hospital, said: “I am delighted that once again, our hospital has received the Green Flag Award. To receive this achievement, truly recognises the commitment and hard work of our staff and Third Sector partners, who do so much to ensure the gardens and greenspaces are kept so beautiful.
“Greenspaces, like the ones around the Royal Edinburgh Hospital are so important. They enable both our patients and staff to connect with nature, which is hugely supportive for their mental and physical wellbeing.”
A total of 87 green spaces in Scotland have won a Green Flag Award for 2023. Across the UK there were 2,216 winners, a record number and up eight from 2022’s total of 2,208.