Manchester

Rochdale park voted 'best in UK' in Green Flag poll

A park in Heywood, Rochdale has come top in the UK in a public vote organised by the Green Flag Awards.

Queens Park, one of 1,200 green spaces to have achieved Green Flag status, received more than 2,000 votes.

The park, which has the second-largest bowling green in the UK, was opened in 1879 using a sum of £10,000 bequeathed by a local merchant.

The Queen's Park Restoration Group, set up in 1989, has managed to secure £1m of lottery money to fund improvements.

The park's 1950s open-air theatre, the original lodge building, and the Victorian fountain have all undergone renovation.

Grants were also used to improve the cafe, footpaths and play areas.

The National Civic Trust first awarded Queens Park its Green Flag status in 2007.

Green Flag Award Scheme manager, Paul Todd said: "The number of votes just shows how passionate people are about parks and particularly how passionate they are about this park and what a great green space it is.

"It's a fantastic site and judges have always been particularly impressed by the work carried out by the staff and the friends' group and all the volunteers involved."

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