Published: 08:45, 18 July 2017
Nature lovers in Kent are sure to be celebrating today after parks and gardens across the county have been recognised for their excellence with more than 30 Green Flag Awards.
Nearly 1,800 parks, gardens, cemeteries, universities, museums, hospitals, shopping centres and canals all over the UK have met the criteria demanded by the awards, which indicates well-managed, clean and safe parks.
The total for Kent is 33, which is the same number as last year.
The Green Flag Awards note that that research shows that people will only visit a park if they perceive it to be clean and safe, and the awards aim to demonstrate which parks meet high standards.
The winners include Brockhill Country Park, Shorne Woods Country Park, Cobtree Manor Park and Mote Park both in Maidstone, The Vines Gardens in Medway, Westgates Parks and Duncan Down in Canterbury.
Samphire Hoe, Bluewater Shopping Centre, Lower Leas Coastal Park in Folkestone, Hythe's Royal Military Canal and Whitstable Castle were also celebrated in the awards.
It's expected that this year more than 37 million people in this country will visit a park.
Among this year’s new entries are the community garden at London’s Tate Modern and the grounds of the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich.
The awards are being presented at ceremonies this week in Hull, Derby, Reading and Watford.
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