The Green Flag was raised above Kingsway Park and the new grass pitch stadia was officially opened by the Leader of Ashfield District Council, Cllr Jason Zadrozny, and the Chairman of Ashfield District Council, Cllr Glenis Maxwell, alongside the Vice-Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Communities and Place Committee, County Cllr John Handley and local County Cllr Rachel Madden.
Kingsway Park has retained the Green Flag Award for the 10th consecutive year and is one of six parks in Ashfield joining 125 other green spaces across the East Midlands to receive the award this year in recognition of their high standards. Ashfield District Council’s parks are among a record-breaking 1,883 UK parks and green spaces that have received the prestigious Green Flag Award in 2018 recognising the mark of a quality park or green space
Cllr Zadrozny said, “It is fantastic to see that the excellent standard of the park has been recognised by this national award scheme for high quality green spaces. We know how much quality green spaces matter to residents and visitors, and this award celebrates the dedication that goes into maintaining the parks to such a high standard. Congratulations to everyone who has been involved in making Kingsway Park more attractive and welcoming to visitors of all ages, and working together to bring about this well-deserved success.”
The Place Team from Ashfield District Council have been working in partnership with Ashland Rovers FC to deliver improvement works to the main grass football pitch on Kingsway Park. The successful LIS funding application was supported by Cllr Rachel Madden, the local County Councillor for the Kirkby South area.
Cllr Madden commented, “Having been involved with Kingsway Park since 2000 through the Friends group, I am particularly pleased that the Green Flag has been retained for another year. The Friends have worked tirelessly alongside officers from Ashfield District Council to access funding so residents of all ages and interests can enjoy the excellent facilities all year round.”
Funding grants of £20,000 from Nottinghamshire County Council’s Local Improvement Scheme and £20,000 from the Football Foundations Stadia Improvement Fund were used to match Section 106 contributions from local housing developments.
Councillor John Handley, Vice-Chairman of the Communities and Place Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council stated, “I am delighted that LIS funding has helped to create a much needed quality community football facility on Kingsway Park. I am confident that as a result of LIS funding these improvements will provide the opportunity for local people to participate in football and encourage additional players to take up the game.”
The improved stadia facilities at Kingsway Park now mean that the football pitch is fully enclosed with new access points for players and officials along with a designated spectator entrance. Team shelters have been provided for the players with a hard standing area and rail provided for spectators.
John Dawn, Chairman of Ashland Rovers FC said, “The completion of the works sees the culmination of four years planning, raising and securing funds and overseeing the construction. This hard work, in partnership with Ashfield District Council, has improved the standard of the main grass pitch and its immediate surroundings which will benefit the local community and help Ashland Rovers FC achieve our sporting ambitions.”
Other groups in Ashfield can follow Ashland Rovers’ lead by bidding for LIS funding. The current round of applications for grants of between £1,000 and £50,000 to put towards capital projects in Nottinghamshire is open until 28 February next year. Visit Nottinghamshire County Council’s website, www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/lis for details.
The Green Flag raising and official opening event was held on Monday 10th December and was attended by representatives from Ashfield District Council, Nottinghamshire County Council, The Acre View Café and local sports teams that use the facilities on Kingsway Park.