L-R Cllr Tom Wright – Portfolio Holder standing behind Cllr Pat Graham Cllr Eileen Wragg Jenny Willmott- Exmouth in Bloom Gerry Bassett – Exmouth in Bloom Exmouth Town Cryer – Roger Bourgein Sharon Scott – EDDC Parks and Open Spaces Improvement Officer

National benchmark for parks and green spaces recognises quality of work at Connaught Gardens, Sidmouth and Manor Gardens Exmouth

East Devon District Council’s StreetScene team is proud to announce that - yet again - Connaught Gardens in Sidmouth and Manor Gardens in Exmouth have proved themselves worthy of flying the prestigious Green flag award, a national award given out by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy to only the very best public parks and gardens in the UK.

This is the 14th year running that Connaught Gardens, Sidmouth has achieve Green Flag status, while for Manor Gardens, Exmouth, it is the 13th consecutive year.

The Green Flag Award® scheme is the benchmark national standard for parks and green spaces in the UK and was first launched in 1996 to recognise and reward the best green spaces in the country. The first awards were given in 1997 and, many years later, it continues to provide the benchmark against which parks and green spaces in East Devon are measured. It is also seen as a way of encouraging others to achieve high environmental standards, setting a benchmark of excellence in recreational green areas. Connaught Gardens and Manor Gardens are among a record-breaking 1,795 parks and green spaces that have received a Green Flag Award – the mark of a quality park or green space.

Now celebrating its 21st year, the award recognises and rewards the best parks and green spaces across the country. A Green Flag flying overhead is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent facilities.

Councillor Tom Wright, East Devon District Council’s portfolio holder for the environment, said:

In East Devon we are very lucky to have an operational team, as well as voluntary input from In Bloom groups and local schools, who work incredibly hard to make our open spaces places of beauty and interest for all visitors. Both Connaught and Manor Pavilion gardens feature shrub beds, seasonal planting, different tree species, a bandstand and events that take place throughout the season, as well as a café to sit and enjoy the surroundings. I would like to thank all our East Devon staff and volunteers for their unstinting efforts into maintaining the exceptionally high standards of horticulture that we see in these wonderful gardens.

Our well maintained and beautifully planted parks and gardens are not only a wonderful facility for our residents to enjoy, but also attract visitors and enhance our tourism offer.

Leaflets about the gardens can be found in dispensers in the gardens themselves or are available from local Tourist Information Centres.