Cllr Geoff Jung at Seaton Wetlands
Cllr Geoff Jung visits award-winning nature reserves at Seaton Wetlands

In a record-breaking year, four of East Devon’s parks and green spaces are raising their prestigious Green Flag Awards

East Devon District Council (EDDC) is celebrating after receiving four Green Flag Awards for: Sidmouth’s Connaught Gardens and Peak Hill Slope, Exmouth’s Manor Gardens, Seaton’s Seafield Gardens and the jewel in the East Devon crown, Seaton Wetlands Nature Reserve.

The award is the international quality mark for parks and green spaces.

After two years that have seen our parks and green spaces play a vital role for people through lockdowns as a place to relax, exercise and meet friends and family safely, the news that four sites across East Devon have achieved Green Flag Awards is testament to the hard work and dedication of the teams that make them great spaces for everyone to enjoy.

The awards are the result of the hard work of EDDC StreetScene and Countryside teams, with valuable help from ‘in bloom’ groups and the many volunteers. 

The staff and volunteers that work together are already busy on exciting new improvements, including a further phase of planting in the autumn which will see the introduction of sustainable perennials and wildlife attracting plants in abundance.

Councillor Geoff Jung, EDDC’s portfolio holder for Coast, Country and Environment, said: 

The strengths of our parks and nature reserves are the teams that manage them. Described by the judges as passionate, knowledgeable and motivated, the StreetScene and Countryside teams are continually improving our sites, providing space for nature by planting wild flowers to benefit pollinators, insects and ultimately birds, providing bird boxes, reducing environmental impacts and have started introducing more drought-resistant species.

The teams are addressing future climate and biodiversity challenges through sustainable planting, the sowing of wildflower seed, and allowing nature recovery at selected sites. In addition to this, we continue to bring in more eco-friendly grounds maintenance equipment in the form of battery operated machinery to reduce emissions and our overall carbon output in maintaining our parks and greenspaces.

Astoundingly, this coveted award has been awarded for 19 years in a row to Connaught Gardens,18 years to Manor Gardens and Seaton Wetlands, and 3 years to Seafield Gardens.

Commenting on the news that these sites have met the Green Flag Award standard, Keep Britain Tidy’s Accreditation Manager Paul Todd said:

I would like to congratulate everyone involved in achieving Green Flag Awards.

Green spaces are vital for the community in East Devon. These awards are testament to all the hard work of staff and volunteers, who do so much to ensure that the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award are maintained.

The Green Flag Award scheme, managed by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy under licence from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, recognises and rewards well-managed parks and green spaces, setting the benchmark standard for the management of green spaces across the United Kingdom and around the world.

A full list of Green Flag Award-winning parks and green spaces is available to download.