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  • Local council

    • Stanley Park in Blackpool named as the UK’s Best Park

      Voters have crowned Stanley Park in Blackpool, Lancashire as the UK’s Best Park 2019.   The awards received a record number of 364 nominations. All eligible nominations then progressed to a public vote, where 36,832 then voted.   This year your votes also helped give “Much Loved” status to 73 parks and green spaces which placed within the top 20% of nominations.   Receiving an estimated two million visitors annually, Stanley Park was opened in 1926 and as well as an abundance of sporting facilities boasts a number of iconic features. Impressive Italian Gardens at its centre are flanked on…

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    • VIDEO: Adur and Worthing step up action against Ash Dieback disease

      A task force has been created to help control a deadly disease which could wipe out all Ash trees in Adur and Worthing.   Ash Dieback has been discovered in trees at Lancing Ring in Adur and The Gallops at Findon Valley in Worthing. Almost 20% of the entire woodland covering is at risk – that’s estimated to be more than 1,200 of the species.   The disease, spreading across Europe, is currently incurable. This means the most common tree in West Sussex, Ash, could disappear from the landscape forever.   Adur & Worthing Councils’ parks team has been carrying out…

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    • Wildflower meadow

      Blooming Wild Devon scheme launches to create more wildflower meadows

      Devon Wildlife Trust has launched a Blooming Wild Devon Crowdfunder scheme to create more wildflower meadows across the county.   In Exeter the Trust are joining up with the City Council to further enhance the displays of wildflowers that have been bursting with colour on roadside verges, roundabouts and open spaces.   People are being asked to support the scheme by donating to Blooming Wild Devon. People have until Friday to make their pledges and can do so by clicking visiting the Devon Wildlife Trust – Blooming Wild Devon Crowfunder page.   In Exeter the plan is to connect wildflower-rich…

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    • Bridgnorth

      Bridgnorth Town Council sign Woodland Trust Tree Charter

      At a meeting of Bridgnorth Town Council on Tuesday evening (20th August) Bridgnorth Town Council voted to sign up to the Tree Charter developed by the Woodland Trust. The motion was the idea of Councillor Carol Whittle. It commits the Council to working towards 10 principles that will encourage the Council to more consciously consider the benefit of trees and hedgerows and their appropriate management.   The 10 Principles:   – Sustain landscapes rich in wildlife – Plant for the future – Celebrate the power of trees to inspire – Grow forests of opportunity and innovation – Protect irreplaceable trees…

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    • South East

      South East’s Best Parks named

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    • Fields in Trust

      Fields in Trust championing this year’s UK’s Best Parks

      The UK’s Best Park 2019 will be announced at the conclusion of Fields in Trust’s Summer of Parks on Thursday 12th September.   Ahead of that, this summer UK’s Best Park will not just be showcasing the parks to receive the highest number of votes in each Home Nation. Each park that has placed in the top 20% of the total nominations will receive “Much Loved” status, recognising the support it has received this summer from those who use and love it.   In total, 73 parks across the UK will be celebrated in this way. Following the close of…

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    • Hackney Council trials glyphosate-free area

      Hackney Council is trialling a glyphosate-free area to promote biodiversity, increase green infrastructure, and see if abandoning the use of the herbicide means it can continue high standards of street maintenance.   The trial, which encompasses streets, estates and green spaces in the Daubeney area of Homerton, began earlier in the summer. It is hoped that the trial will demonstrate the effect of allowing these areas to grow naturally, so that decisions can be made about the future use of herbicides and other methods of removing weeds.   The trial comes in addition to a number of measures the Council is…

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    • Gateshead council trial battery powered machinery

      Council workers in Gateshead have been trialling new electrically-powered machinery – in a bid not to wake the neighbours.   Work on the central reservation and verges on the A184 Askew Road was able to start from 4.00am.   The busy dual carriageway which links the Redheugh Bridge with the A1 has housing close by and the council was concerned that the noise of grass cutting and other horticultural machinery so early in the morning might disturb local residents.   Instead of using the normal petrol-powered equipment, workers will be using a range of electrically-powered machinery currently on trial with…

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    • Broomfield Park

      Wetland created at Broomfield Park in Enfield

      A celebratory event at Broomfield Park has marked the opening of Enfield’s latest wetland project that will deliver a huge range of benefits to the community and environment.   The Rivers Trust and Thames21 have provided support to Enfield Council who have led the design and creation of the wetland. Funding has come from the Coca-Cola Foundation via a water stewardship partnership between Coca-Cola and WWF.   Guests at the opening were shown all the work of volunteers who took part in mass planting events. They heard about the multiple benefits that the wetland provides and were able to take…

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    • Herefordshire Council

      Ancient woodlands get stay of execution after work is paused on Hereford road schemes

      Ancient woodlands in Hereford are getting a stay of execution after a decision to pause all work on two bypasses.   The Woodland Trust says it is delighted with today’s news from Herefordshire Council but will continue to press for the irreplaceable habitats to be considered as part of the reviews into both the Southern Link Road and Hereford Bypass.   As it stands, the southern project, which already has planning permission, is set to destroy two ancient woodlands – Grafton Wood and an unnamed wood, It will also cause indirect damage from disturbance, noise and pollution to Hayleasow Wood,…

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    • Biodiversity boost for Forest Farm in Cardiff

      Biodiversity is getting a boost at Forest Farm following a successful bid for funding that will see a range of habitats at the popular nature reserve enhanced and restored. Woodland, scrub, ponds, wetlands, orchard, hedgerow and grassland at the site will all benefit from a £60,000 grant from Network Rail’s Greater West Programme. Working with partner organisations Buglife and Plantlife as well as the Friends of Forest Farm, the project also includes plans to survey the site and train a pool of volunteers to assist with future surveys so that the impact of the work on the flora and fauna…

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    • Residents of Hackney invited to set up new community parklets

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    • Which UK local authority is the greenest?

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    • Walker Park, Newcastle

      Newcastle launches campaign to be UK’s next National Park City

      Campaigners in Newcastle, including Newcastle Parks and Allotments Trust and Newcastle City Council, have launched a campaign for the city to become the UK’s next National Park City.   Announced by Newcastle Parks and Allotments Trust chief executive, James Cross, at an event celebrating London as the world’s first National Park City, the campaign will see Newcastle show its support for making the city greener, healthier and wilder.   James Cross, Chief Executive of Newcastle Parks and Allotments Trust – an independent charity responsible for the management and upkeep of the city’s 33 parks and 64 allotment sites said:  …

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    • Blechynden Gardens

      Southampton City Council transforms Blechynden Gardens

      Southampton City Council has completed work on the regeneration of Blechynden Gardens.   The concept for the park, developed by Cliff Brown of Southampton City Council’s City Services Team, was to create an attractive new public space which respects the rich heritage of the area as one of the last remaining World War II sites in Southampton, whilst looking forward to a peaceful future.   The park balances protecting what is left of the Emperia Buildings, blending the remains of the walls with two set piece sculptures, whilst allowing natural plants and wildlife to flourish.   The new design also…

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    • Woodland Trust says local planners are still failing to safeguard ancient woodlands

      One year on from strengthened protection for ancient woodland in England, the Woodland Trust says local planners are still failing to safeguard the habitat the changes were designed to protect.   Despite changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) for England giving ancient woodland and trees the same protection as our finest listed buildings, some councils are still approving planning applications that contravene the new rules. The changes to the NPPF wording stipulated that any applications for development resulting in loss or damage to ancient woods or ancient and veteran trees should be refused unless they were ‘wholly exceptional’.…

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    • Planning permission granted for Guildhall memorial space

      The design for developing the Guildhall memorial space, at the entrance to the city centre war memorial and Victoria Park, has been granted planning permission. Over the next year the site will become an inviting reflective space that allows the Cenotaph to be more visible and prominent from further away, whilst also being a place to sit and walk through to the park. Proposals for the site of the former Drift bar were revealed to the public in March this year and included a walkway, trees and benches. The Cenotaph is an important part of memorial events in the city…

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    • £120k of landscaping completed in Southwark

      New natural play equipment and SuDS form part of the £120k landscaping project which has been completed on the Lancaster Estate in Southwark. Residents have been working with Southwark Council, local ward members and the Bankside Open Spaces Trust (BOST) on the project, It is one of the first to be completed under the council’s new Great Estates programme. The funding came from Section 106 money from the nearby Blackfriars Circus by developers Barratts. It follows an investment of £150k into play equipment and landscaping in the Peabody Blackfriars estate on the west side of the development in 2017. Cllr…

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    • Hackney Council releases new pictures of how Abney Park could look

      Images released by Hackney Council show how Abney Park could look if its application for further National Lottery Heritage Funding for the site is successful. The plans could see a new building – incorporating a cafe and space to support classes and school visits – constructed at the park’s Stoke Newington High Street entrance, a new accessible entrance at Church Street, and the second stage of renovation of the park’s chapel so it can be used by the community for events, music and theatre productions, celebrations and weddings. The plans were approved by the Council’s Cabinet last week, and will…

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    • Wandsworth council

      Wandsworth Council sets itself target to become greenest borough in inner London

      Wandsworth Council has set itself the target of becoming the greenest borough in inner London.   Council Leader Cllr Ravi Govindia laid out his ambition for Wandsworth Council to play its part in tackling climate change – with the goal of being carbon neutral by 2030 and a zero-emission council by 2050. He said: “The threat of climate change to our environment is one that none of us can take lightly. It is a threat to our way of life for us and future generations.   “Councils therefore must join the fight to address the drivers of climate change.  We…

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    • Trees to be removed in Roath Park Gardens, Cardiff to deal with Oak Processionary Moth

      Evidence of Oak Processionary Moth (OPM) has been found on an oak tree in Roath Park Gardens in Cardiff as a result of proactive inspection by Natural Resources Wales of seven newly planted oak trees.   A Statutory Plant Health Notice was issued on the trees on 24 July, which requires the treatment and removal of the trees.   The infected tree in Roath Park Gardens were sprayed as a precaution using an insecticide on the evening of the 23 July and will be removed along with the other six trees today, 25 July.   The Welsh Government has said…

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    • True value of Birmingham city’s parks and open spaces calculated at £11billion

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    • Greener Grangetown wins prestigious Roy Edwards Award

      Greener Grangetown has won the Roy Edwards Award at the ICE Wales Awards 2019, which recently took place at the Marriot Hotel in Cardiff.   The innovative project catches, cleans and diverts over 40,000 square meters of rainwater run-off directly into the River Taff, rather than pumping the water over eight kilometers through the Vale of Glamorgan for treatment, before being pumped into the sea.   The scheme collects surface water from roofs and roads from twelve residential streets in Grangetown. Channeling and filtering it through over 100 rain gardens before draining to the river Taff. Through the scheme, significant…

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    • Birmingham bids to become a Tree City of the World

      Talks to establish Birmingham as the first officially designated “Tree City” of the UK are set to be held between the city council and an international foundation today.   Council officers and Cabinet Members Cllr John O’Shea and Cllr Waseem Zaffar are due to meet a delegation from the US-based Arbor Day Foundation about the possibility of becoming a member of the Tree Cities of the World Network.   The bid is being formally launched during the talks, which come on the first day of Love Parks Week (July 12-21). Achievement of the status requires the city and the council…

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    • Manchester council to trial hybrid grass technology

      A section of Piccadilly Gardens will be sown with reinforced hybrid grass designed to withstand tough conditions, as part of wider works to maintain the grassed areas in the public square.   The trial will see a small area adjacent to the fountain sown with the hi-tech turf, which is a mixture of natural and synthetic grass.   The hybrid technology delivers a natural surface that is far more resistant than standard grasses and will prove more cost-effective over the long term, reducing the amount of maintenance required.    Should the hybrid grass prove successful, the Council will then consider…

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