Green flag success for two venues

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Crossley Park in Ripley is celebrating this week after hearing it had won its fifth prestigious Green Flag Award in a row.

The park received the award, along with Pennytown Ponds in Somercotes and two parks in Belper.

However, there was disappointment for Heanor Memorial Park and Ripley Cemetery which missed out on the awards this year.

Eddie Hogan, who leads the team that looks after the parks, paid tribute to the hard work of his colleagues Dave Fisher, Dave England, Ian Brown and Scott Chapman.

He said: “The lads have worked through all kinds of adverse weather and they have gone above and beyond. They have worked hard. The more recognition we get for some of the good stuff we do is a morale booster.”

Tessa Spencer and Bruce Swanwick, of Crossley Park’s Community Association, joined Amber Valley borough councillor Liz Bowley, for a short ceremony in the park to mark the achievement. Cllr Bowley said: “ We are proud of all our open spaces and the value they bring to local people.

“A key to the success of those that won awards is community involvement as each of the parks has a Friends group or some kind of community interest group.”

In Somercotes, Pennytown Ponds will raise its second flag for the nature reserve, which is surrounded by an industrial estate.

Amber Valley Borough Council is now looking for groups of people who are interested in forming a ‘friends’ group’ for Ripley Cemetery or Heanor Memorial Park to get in touch with them. For more information contact Sharon Thomas on 01773 841570.

Paul Todd, Green Flag Award Scheme Manager, said: “A Green Flag Award provides national recognition for the achievements of all those whose hard work and dedication has helped to create these fantastic places for all to enjoy.”