DARLINGTON’S South Park and West Cemetery have retained their prestigious Green Flag Award to keep them listed among the best green spaces in the country.

It marks the ninth year that South Park has held the Green Flag, while West Cemetery and Crematorium won it for the first time in 2013.

The awards have been announced as part of Love Parks week, which started on Friday and runs until Sunday.

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Councillor Nick Wallis, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for leisure and local environment, said: “It’s great news that these two well-loved green spaces have won the Green Flag award.

“Winning the award wouldn’t be possible without the full-time dedication of staff, as well as the community groups who help maintain the green spaces and help raise funds.”

A record-breaking 1,476 parks and green spaces across the country have won the award, which is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible standards.

Keep Britain Tidy’s Green Flag Award scheme manager Paul Todd said: “We are delighted to announce yet another record-breaking year for Green Flag Award parks and green spaces.

“A Green Flag Award provides national recognition for all the parks managers, staff and volunteers who, through their dedication and hard work, have helped to create these fantastic places for everyone to enjoy.”