Eight parks and green spaces across the north-east have been named winners of a prestigious national award.
Environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful has presented a Green Flag Award to 71 Scottish parks in 2019, with six of them based in Aberdeen.
Duthie Park, Hazlehead Park, Johnston Gardens, Seaton Park, Slopefield Allotments and Victoria Park are all celebrating their achievements.
And in Aberdeenshire, both Aden Country Park and Haddo Country Park have been awarded the top honour.
Haddo Country Park
Historic landscape surrounding a beautiful mansion house and terraced gardens.
Visitors can walk for miles in the country park or let their kids burn off some energy in the newadventure playground. Two birdwatching hides on site.
One of Aberdeen’s most popular parks which opened in 1883.
Home to restored Victorian features such as the Band Stand, fountains and boating ponds. Visitors also enjoy the David Welch Winter Gardens, one of the largest indoor gardens in Europe.The Parx Cafe, located within the park, is also popular with those visiting the park. Two playparks.
Slopefield Allotment Association, located just off the city’s Craigton Road, was set up in 2010 to manage on a day-to-day basis more than 100 allotments in partnership with Aberdeen City Council.Aims to promote and share gardening expertise and knowledge, encourage the use of green methods and enhance biodiversity.
Aden Country Park
A 230-acre country park known as the “jewel in the Buchan crown”.
Situated in the heart of the park lies a semi-circular farmstead housing the award-winning Aberdeenshire Farming Museum. Other facilities include an outdoor gym, dog agility and exercise area, children’s play area, cafe/restaurant, walks and trials and toilets.
Small park in the city centre, opened to the public in 1871.
The park is full of beautiful shrubs, flowers and trees and a Rhododendron Dell. A sensory garden is also within the site. In the centre of the park there is a fountain made of 14 different types of granite from local quarries.
One of Aberdeen’s oldest historic properties, with the land gifted to the city in 1319 by King Robert the Bruce. The park features two golf courses, a pitch and putt, a maze, mini zoo (Pets Corner), children’s playground and cafe. There are two rose gardens, including a memorial to the victims of Piper Alpha.
One of the city’s biggest parks, located in the Old Aberdeen area of the city.
Features a floral display called Cathedral Walk, very popular with visitors and locals.
Also home to a walled garden, a popular children’s play area featuring an old brake van and a riverside walk linking the park to the historic Brig o’ Balgownie.
The park used to belong to the Johnston House Estate but was gifted to
the city in 1936. The beautiful landscaped garden boasts streams, ponds, waterfalls, rockeries and a picturesque bridge which has featured in many wedding photos. Also a play area and toilets on site.
The International Green Flag Award celebrates well maintained parks and green spaces and supports the opportunities they provide to enable exercise, improve mental wellbeing and provide safe places for play.
Airyhall-based Slopefield Allotments, first set up in 2010 to manage more than 100 community sites in partnership with Aberdeen City Council, is the first of the city’s allotment groups to have been included.
And popular Duthie Park has been presented with a prestigious Heritage Award, recognising how staff and volunteers are managing to support and promote their unique heritage.
John Wheeler, operational delivery convener at Aberdeen City Council, said: “It is fantastic we have six parks and green spaces to be awarded the prestigious Green Flag accolade this year.
“Slopefield Allotments is the first of our allotments which have been included in the awards and Duthie Park being given a Heritage Award is an exciting achievement for the city.
“The awards for all our parks and green spaces are really a reflection of the hard-working and knowledgeable volunteers and staff who manage these spaces for the benefit of both residents and visitors to our beautiful city.”
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Friends of Seaton Park is one of the organisations which works in partnership with the city council to ensure the park is a rewarding place to visit.
Among its 2018 projects include the successful installation of an outdoor table tennis table and painting a mural on the Gardener’s Bothy.
Chairwoman of the group Sheila Gordon said the award was very much a “community effort”.
She added: “This is our fourth or fifth time we have had it and a few years in a row.
“It’s very much a community effort. All the parks have active groups who work to keep them looking good.”
Meanwhile Peter Stephen, chairman of Friends of Victoria and Westburn Park, said they were “absolutely delighted” to have received an award.
The group, which meets on Saturday mornings, focuses on improving the park with planting, weeding, painting and litter picks.
He said: “We’re absolutely delighted to have won the Green Flag award for a second time in a year and we’re looking forward to the big difference that has been made in the park.
“The award is testament to the work carried out by the Friends Group and also the council to get this park back to what it was – a beautiful park.”
Stephen Robertson, chair of Friends of Johnston Gardens, said: It’s a beautiful garden space and it deserves recognition.”
Chairman of Aberdeenshire Council’s infrastructure services committee, Peter Argyle, said: “Aden and Haddo are two of our most popular parks, and it’s great to see them continually recognised in these awards.”