Six parks and open spaces in Preston have been named the best in the country.
The parks, (Grange Park, Ashton Park, Avenham and Miller Parks, Haslam Park and Fishwick Local Nature Reserve) are now on the list of sites to be given a Green Flag Award.
Green Flag recognises excellence in green space management. Criteria used to judge green spaces are cleanliness, maintenance, sustainability, community involvement, heritage, nature conservation, health and safety.
Councillor Robert Boswell, cabinet member for environment, said: “We’re thrilled to now be able to offer the people of Preston six award-winning parks.
“In addition to renewing previous awards for Avenham and Miller Parks, Grange Park, Haslam Park and Fishwick Local Nature Reserve, we have also been awarded the Green Flag for Ashton Park which is fantastic news after we were very close to gaining it last year.
“Parks and green spaces are essential assets to the city and we are committed to continually improving them in order to provide local people with first class facilities.”
Phil Barton, Green Flag Plus Partnership chairman, said: “I would like to congratulate this year’s winners, who have worked hard throughout the year to keep their parks and green spaces at a high standard and ensure they are pleasant and enjoyable spaces for the whole community.
“The Green Flag Award Scheme, and its growth, is essential in driving up the standards of our parks and green spaces.
“Access to quality green space is something we all desire and the scheme plays a key role in providing it.
In 2011, over a thousand parks and green spaces will fly either the Green Flag or Community Award.
The aim of Green Flag is to get 50% of green spaces in England and Wales to Green Flag standard by 2020.