Parks in Fylde have been given a major boost after being awarded five prestigious Green Flag awards.
Lowther Gardens, Fairhaven Lake and Gardens, Ashton Gardens, Lytham Memorial Gardens and the Promenade Gardens have all been recognised for their outstanding beauty.
Seven years ago Fylde won just two Green Flags in the Keep Britain Tidy competition. The figure rose to four in 2010 and five in 2011.
Organisers announced this week that all five have been retained after a series of inspections – some were conducted by mystery shoppers – in May.
The inspections look for general maintenance and management, recent improvements, community involvement and plans for the future.
Coun Sue Fazackerley, Fylde Council’s cabinet member for leisure and culture, said: “It’s not long ago that we had just two Green Flags so winning five is something of which we can be really proud.
“Our volunteers in the parks as well as council staff can take credit for these awards as much of the improvement work in the parks could not have happened without their involvement.”
Recent improvements to parks have helped to maintain the Green Flag ratings.
At Lowther Gardens in Lytham, flowerbeds continue to be maintained to a high standard and open-air art events have added to the culture of the park.
A Spitfire memorial was recently erected at Fairhaven Lake, while Ashton Gardens has been extensively modernised with work this spring including the restoration of the rose and rock and water garden.
In Lytham, the Memorial Gardens were restored to splendour with the staining of benches, planting of seasonal floral displays in the beds and painting of railings.
Coun Fazackerley added: “It is a magnificent record of achievement, particularly considering the difficult financial circumstances we are experiencing. Maintaining our parks and gardens to such a high standard is expensive but staff and volunteers have been particularly successful in levering in grants from outside organisations.”