The winners of a nationwide search to find the UK’s Favourite Parks have officially been announced. Led by royal environmental charity, Fields in Trust, the competition saw over 360 parks nominated by those who use and love them. Following a summer-long campaign that spotlighted the importance of having accessible green spaces in our communities, the charity announced that Penrhos Coastal Park in Holyhead achieved the most public votes and is officially the ‘UK’s Favourite Park 2022.’ 9 parks in the South East have also been accredited as ‘Local Favourites’, placing in the top 20% of public votes.
In total over 30,000 people cast a vote for their favourite park and Penrhos Coastal Park in Holyhead, Wales has emerged as the overall winner for the UK. The national winners are Blackpool’s Stanley Park in England, Aberdeen’s Seaton Park in Scotland, and Craigavon City Park in Northern Ireland. Fields in Trust has also published a list of ‘Local Favourites’ – parks which placed in the top 20% of the public vote, demonstrating the love their local communities have for them. These include:
- Hampden Park, East Sussex
- Horsham Park, West Sussex
- Howe Park Wood, Buckinghamshire
- Nork Park, Surrey
- Riverside Park, Southampton
- Swanley Park, Kent
- Staines Park, Surrey
- Ventnor Park, Isle of Wight
- Willen Park, Buckinghamshire
Attracting close to 100,000 visitors each year, Penrhos Coastal Park is near Holyhead on the Isle of Anglesey in North Wales. The 200-acre park has everything from beaches to woodland walks and is extremely popular with both locals and tourists alike. With a rich history dating back to 1553, the green space is also home to several features of historical interest, including original Tudor era buildings.
Commenting on the announcement of Penrhos Coastal Park as the ‘UK’s Favourite Park 2022’, Chief Executive of Fields in Trust, Helen Griffiths, shared:
“We’re incredibly excited to announce that Penrhos Coastal Park in Holyhead has been voted as the UK’s Favourite Park 2022 by those who use and love it. It is clear that this park is a very special place to a lot of people, and we are thrilled to officially crown it the UK’s favourite. We’ve had a fantastic response to the competition from all across the UK and I’d like to thank everyone who nominated and voted for parks over the past few weeks.”
Securing more nominations than ever before, the campaign has illustrated how appreciation of our local parks has grown since the pandemic. As concerns mount over the climate crisis, green spaces have been proven to improve air quality and significantly limit the impact of heatwaves, by lowering urban temperatures.
With Fields in Trust’s annual Green Space Index, published earlier this year, revealing that 2.8 million people are not living within a ten-minute walk of a local park and only 6% of green space provision in Britain is legally protected, the campaign has highlighted the financial and developmental threats to green spaces.
“The UK is home to such a diverse range of green spaces, and we hope that this award has encouraged people to truly appreciate their local parks. Our work to legally protect green spaces for good means we’re well aware of the threats they face and how important it is value and celebrate them,” concluded Helen.
To find out more about the ‘UK’s Favourite Parks’ award and the work that national charity Fields in Trust conducts, visit: www.fieldsintrust.org/favourite-parks