Silloth Green is flying the flag as one of the UK’s very best green spaces
Silloth Green in Cumbria has been recognised by the Green Flag Award Scheme as one of the very best in the world.
Silloth Green is among a record-breaking 1,797 UK parks and green spaces that will today receive a prestigious Green Flag Award the mark of a quality park or green space.
This international award, now into its third decade, is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible environmental standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent visitor facilities.
Councillor Bill Jefferson, Chair of Silloth-on-Solway Town Council’s Parks Committee said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive a Green Flag Award for the fifth successive year, with our highest marks ever. The Green Flag judges spent three hours with us last Monday morning, summarising a detailed and positive report with the comment that “this is a very attractive and well-managed site. It is a pleasure to visit and a real credit to all those involved in its restoration and ongoing management. Thank you.”
“We know how much quality green spaces matter to residents and visitors, and this award celebrates the dedication that goes into maintaining Silloth Green to such a high standard.
“The Green Flag Award is already paving the way for the two high-profile RHS visits to us. The Cumbria in Bloom judges visited us on 10 July and whilst we still await their final report, it is clear that they have been delighted to find further progress. It is widely known that this year, Silloth has again been nominated by the RHS to the national short list of finalists in the small coastal town category. The national judges visit us on 2 August and final preparations are underway by the Silloth in Bloom community group, to ensure the best possible outcome.”
Silloth Green is one of the largest village greens in the North of England. It boasts spectacular views over the Solway Firth to Criffel and the Caerlaverock Hills in the North and the Lake District to the South. The Green forms a green link between Silloth’s grand Victorian townscape and the sea front promenade, for many years attracting visitors seeking fresh sea air and recreational facilities.
Successful funding bids in 2010 resulted in a five-year programme to refurbish the Green and restore its heritage buildings. Heritage Lottery Fund put forward £1.1m and the Rural Development Programme for England provided funds of £96k. Silloth Town Council also made a substantial contribution. Officially re-opened in 2012, the Green now boasts a modern Water Splash play area, an entertainment area in local Cumbrian sandstone, a woodland adventure play area, a Putting Green and a BMX track. Beautiful oak picnic tables and benches are to be found in various locations, all accessible by new paths. Along Criffel Street, some Victorian style lighting have been installed, in-keeping with the heritage of the town. The Edwardian ladies’ toilets, built in 1910 and the spectacular Victorian pagoda overlooking the sea have also been sympathetically refurbished.
The Green’s Community Garden, situated on the corner of Criffel Street and Lawn Terrace, was designed with input from local people. The garden was opened in May 2014 and is cared for by dedicated volunteers. The Heritage Rose and Bee Garden is situated closer to the sea, with a bee hotel in the middle of a striking display of rose bushes, plants and shrubs which have created a haven for the local bee and butterfly population. In 2016, the Heritage Rose & Bee Garden won a Bees’ Needs Award which is run in conjunction with Defra and the National Pollinator Strategy and is presented to Green Flag Award or Green Flag Community Award winning parks and green spaces in England that have made improvements to encourage pollinators across towns, cities and the wider countryside.
Regular events, organised by volunteers, are held on the Green annually, including Silloth Green Day, Silloth Vintage Rally, Silloth Carnival and the Silloth Music and Beer Festival. A weekly Thursday market is also held along the edge of the Green, along Criffel Street. General information and more details about events can be found on the Silloth Green website at www.sillothgreen.co.uk.
Tony Markley, Mayor of Silloth, said: “We are really pleased to have received another Green Flag Award which could not have been achieved without the dedicated work of our Town Council staff, grounds maintenance team and community volunteers.”
International Green Flag Award scheme manager Paul Todd said: “We are delighted to be celebrating another record-breaking year for the Green Flag Award scheme.
“Each flag is a celebration of the thousands of staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to maintain the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award. The success of the scheme, especially in these challenging times, demonstrates just how much parks matter to people.”
Silloth’s flag raising will take place on Wednesday 2 August 2017 at the Community Garden on Silloth Green.