Seven Acre Park volunteers praised for efforts

Friends of Edinburgh’s newest Green Flag park have been commended for their efforts to improve the space for their community.

Voluntary work on Seven Acre Park in Liberton – which was awarded Edinburgh’s 30th Green Flag in July – was deemed ‘Outstanding’ by Keep Scotland Beautiful’s ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ assessors, scoring a total of 86 points out of a potential 100 for Community Participation, Environmental Responsibility and Gardening Achievement.

The environmental improvement campaign, run in conjunction with the Royal Horticultural Society, acknowledges the achievements of volunteer-led groups to clean and beautify their neighbourhoods.

Environment Convener, Councillor Lesley Hinds, said: “Seven Acre Park was quite rightly described by assessors as a ‘hidden gem’, and this is in no small part thanks to the invaluable work carried out by its committed Friends group.

“Our own parks team have worked closely with members to create a space that both welcomes the public and encourages wildlife to flourish, so I want to acknowledge their efforts too.

“Edinburgh is lucky enough to boast more than 130 beautiful parks and gardens, 30 of which hold Green Flags, and there is no doubt the Friends groups across the city make a real difference to the popularity and amenity of these spaces.”

Graham Beal, Chairperson of Friends of Seven Acre Park, added: "Having received a Green Flag award for the park earlier in 2016, we are delighted to additionally receive an 'Outstanding' award from It's Your Neighbourhood. 

“The group takes great pride in the park, working through a number of initiatives to help improve the open space. We have further plans to maintain and enhance the beauty of this wonderful area, and would welcome new members."

Through work with the City of Edinburgh Council, Friends of Seven Acre Park are engaged in a variety of activities benefiting the local community and wildlife, including the implementation of wildflower beds, ‘food for free orchards’, nature interpretation boards and a woodland trail.

They also carry out regular litter picks and have been successful in securing several Woodland Trust grants, planting native trees around the park.

The group, which has more than 20 members, holds regular meetings and AGMs, and has been cited by Keep Scotland Beautiful as a ‘great example’ of how successful partnership working between a council and a Friends group can be.

Friends of Parks groups operate on a voluntary basis and play a key role in enhancing and protecting local parks alongside the Council. Find out more about existing groups, and how to set up a new one, on the Council website.


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