Mill and Marsh Meadows in Henley are one of the very best parks in the UK – and that’s official. They have been awarded the prestigious Green Flag for the sixth year running.
The Green Flag scheme, run by Keep Britain Tidy, celebrates the best parks and green spaces within the UK, marking the winners on everything from appearance, safety, cleanliness and maintenance. Alternative years, judging is done with official notice and judges and the following year by a mystery judge which was the case this year. Assessments are made on both the field onsite work and the management plans and procedures in place and feedback is given on improvements that can be made.
Deputy Chair of Henley in Bloom, Councillor Kellie Hinton said, “I think it is incredibly important to have been awarded this again particularly as last year was a tough time because when the judging was taking place we had just lost our Parks Manager, Gareth Bartle. So this is the first time after a full year of this new management structure of Becky Walker (Parks Officer), Karl Bishop (Parks Manager) and Kyle Dowling (Horticultural Warden). Whilst I believe in them, awards like this, they really help the team. It is a reinforcement of what we are doing is us working in the right direction. We want to keep this place as welcoming and as safe possible for everyone to enjoy.”
Parks Manager, Karl Bishop added, “We try and do extra bits to the area but it is more of a case of maintaining the high standards against the criteria. That’s how we have achieved it again this year. It’s fantastic morale booster for the team and it is great for the park for so many people to come here and enjoy the area.”
Ilona Livarski, Conservation Park Warden, “We have been working with Henley in Transition/Henley Wildlife Group alongside the River & Rowing Museum to upgrade the front of their area. We have been taking out invasive species and we are hoping to plant it up with natural wildflowers that we can collect from Marsh Meadows. We are hoping that it will flourish in the next year. It’s been a great collaborative project.”