Fifteen flags in a row for Spa Gardens

NARG 1508172AM1 Ripon Spa Gardens.  Harrogate Borough Council's Horticultural  Officer Sue Wood with Area Supervisor Andrew Harrison and his team  Martin Gabriel, Howard Naylor, James Howitt, Stuart Gough, Jack Bernas, Paul Yarker and Andrew Scanlan with their Green Flag Award. Picture : Adrian Murray.  (1508172AM1)
NARG 1508172AM1 Ripon Spa Gardens. Harrogate Borough Council's Horticultural Officer Sue Wood with Area Supervisor Andrew Harrison and his team Martin Gabriel, Howard Naylor, James Howitt, Stuart Gough, Jack Bernas, Paul Yarker and Andrew Scanlan with their Green Flag Award. Picture : Adrian Murray. (1508172AM1)

It’s 15 in a row for Ripon Spa Gardens, as the park picks up yet another Green Flag Award from Keep Britain Tidy.

For the 15th consecutive year the park, in the centre of Ripon, has been recognised as one of the best green spaces in the UK.

A Green Flag flying overhead is a sign to the public that the park boasts the highest possible standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent facilities.

Ripon Spa Gardens is among a record-breaking 1,582 parks and green spaces to receive the prestigious Green Flag Award this year.

The Spa Gardens was awarded its first Green Flag in 2001; it now holds the record for receiving the most green flags in the region.

The multi award-winning park boasts a Victorian bandstand, which hosts concerts on Sunday afternoons throughout the summer months, the popular Sun Parlour café, crazy golf, a magnificent bowling pavilion and bowling green, colourful flower displays and many other facilities.

A popular attraction this year is the set of chainsaw carvings in the gardens depicting characters from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Alice, Caterpillar, White Rabbit, the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts. This year marks the 150th anniversary of the book’s publication and the inspiration for the novel is believed to have come from carvings in Ripon Cathedral.

Cllr Michael Harrison, Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for the Environment, is delighted with the accolade.

He said: “Achieving this award 15 years in a row reflects the continued hard work and dedication of our parks team and the Friends of Spa Gardens and Spa Park, and I would like to thank everyone for their on-going commitment to providing a park of the highest quality.

“I am pleased that once again their efforts are being recognised and that the people who live in and visit Ripon have such an attractive, well-kept park to enjoy.”

International Green Flag Award scheme manager Paul Todd said: “All the flags flying this year are a testament to the efforts of the thousands of men and women, both staff and volunteers, who work tirelessly to maintain the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award.”