The Southampton park award scheme is intended for parks which have already received the nationally recognised Green Flag award. The park award will last for up to four years after which the park will be re-submitted for a Green Flag award. This will ensure that the park retains its high quality status.
When a park is ready for Green Flag application (as assessed by our trained Green Flag judges) it will be submitted at the next available time (registration of interest in October, full submission in January). This process will continue as it is now.
If successful in achieving the Green Flag award the park will then move onto the Southampton park award scheme.
If unsuccessful the judges’ comments will be reviewed to decide whether a further application should be made in the next round.
How the Southampton park award scheme will work:
- Action plans will be refreshed annually by the park district manager, working with relevant community groups and others with an interest in the park.
- A judging panel will be set up to visit the park and make an assessment of the quality using the Green Flag scoring system and the quality standard in the Green Space Strategy.
- The judging panel of three people will consist of two volunteers from Friends group committees (not from the park being judged) or member of one of our other interest groups, i.e., Southampton Commons and Parks Protection Society (SCAPPS) and one of our trained Green Flag award judges.
- Judging can take place at any time of the year and will be repeated annually.
- Judging will consist of a visit to the park by the judging panel, led by the district manager for that park and others with an interest in the park for example friends groups, residents, partners.
- A Southampton park award quality standard flag will then be flown in winning parks in a prominent place, during the years when it is in the scheme.
- If a park is deemed to have dropped in quality to the point where it no longer meets the Southampton standard then it will be removed from the scheme. A decision will then be made as to whether to improve it and re-submit it for the national Green Flag scheme in the next cycle.
Therefore parks will be on the Southampton park award scheme for a maximum of four years between Green Flag entries. Each green flag quality park will have a five year management plan at the point of achieving its first Green Flag. When the five year plan is due for renewal, the park will be re-entered into the national Green Flag scheme to re-affirm its high quality status.