CITY LEADS FIELD IN PARK AWARDS.
LIVERPOOL has come out on top in a national awards scheme for parks and green spaces.
The Green Flag Awards announced today reveal that 58 out of 182 winners nationwide -almost a third -are in the north west.
Of the 17 in Merseyside, seven are in Liverpool,making it the leading authority in the country for Green Flag Awards.
There are a further three winners in Warrington and Halton.
The Green Flag scheme,managed by the Civic Trust, is the national standard for parks and green spaces.
Karen Lewis, Green Flag Award manager at the Civic Trust's north west office in Liverpool, said: ``Green spaces play a vital role for quality of life and civic pride,and there is an increasing awareness,at all levels, of their value.
``The north west is a standard bearer for the scheme.
``That's because there has been a big uptake and park managers talk to each other.
``The area traditionally,because of its industrial heritage, has the largest number of parks -they were created through civic pride and gave people a place to get away from the factories.''
Court Hey park in Knowsley and Ashton park in Wirral are both new winners in this year's awards, as are Liverpool's Everton Park nature garden, Falkner Square garden and St John's garden.
Liverpool's horticultural manager Carol Webster said: ``We have more parks and gardens than any city outside London,but also there's a deep commitment to improving our parks.''
Future nominations are likely to include the bowling green at Circular Road East in Norris Green, Springwood crematorium and Sefton park.
THE full list of Merseyside winners denotes new in 2003): Acornfield plantation local nature reserve,Knowsley n Ashton park,Wirral Calderstones park,Liverpool n Clinkham Wood community woodland local nature reserve, St Helens n Court Hey park,KnowsleyEverton park nature garden, Liverpool n Falkner Square garden, Liverpool Henley park,Knowsley McGoldrick park,Knowsley Mesnes park,St Helens Our Lady and St Nicholas church gardens,Liverpool Reynolds park,Liverpool Sawpit park,Knowsley Siding Lane local nature reserve, St Helens St Chad's gardens,Knowsley n St John's garden,Liverpool Vale park,Wirral n Woolton woods and Camphill, Liverpool plus...
Runcorn Hill park andlLocal nature reserve,Halton n Walton Hall gardens Walton Lea crematorium, Warrington
SUCCESS: Falkner Squaregarden in the city centre is a first-time winner