Park's Green Flag status for fifth year in a row

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Park's Green Flag status for fifth year in a row

A Bexhill park has been awarded a national accolade for the fifth year in a row - but the hard work of its keepers is being made more difficult by vandals.

Egerton Park has once again been granted Green Flag status - given by the charity Keep Britain Tidy to parks which meet the highest standards for maintenance, environment and facilities.

The Rother District Council-owned facility was first awarded Green Flag status in 2013, following a £1 million revamp including a new play area, refreshment kiosk and sensory garden.

Maintenance work on the park this year has included renewing and refreshing areas of planting and installing rocks and ornamental railings for protection around planted areas.

The park is maintained by contractor idverde, by head gardener Neil Stripp, assistant Damien Sumner and their colleagues, but their job has been made harder by a spate of petty vandalism.

In recent months, incidents have included damage to the roof of shelters in the park, cigarette burns and tears to a canopy covering the outdoor gym and tampering with play equipment.

Cllr Ian Hollidge, district council cabinet member for environment, transport and Bexhill Town Centre, said: "Achieving Green Flag status for the fifth year in a row is testament to the hard work put in by Neil, Damien and their predecessors.

"Egerton Park is a much-loved community facility and remains a safe place for people of all ages to enjoy and the award recognises the high quality of the park and the important role it plays in providing a green lung in the heart of Bexhill.

"However, it would be a great shame if all that hard work was put in jeopardy by the mindless actions of a few individuals.

"I'd urge anyone who witnesses any vandalism to report it to the police or the council so action can be taken to ensure we can keep the park in pristine condition for everyone to enjoy."

First opened in the late 1800s, Egerton Park is one of a record 1,797 UK parks and green spaces to get Green Flag status this year.

Published on Tuesday, August 1 2017

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