Halton and Wakefield council green space departments shine at APSE awards

Halton Borough Council won best performer and Wakefield Metropolitan District Council most improved performer at a recent awards ceremony.

The two triumphed in the parks, open spaces and horticultural services category of the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE). Halton’s open space division won praise for its value for money, public satisfaction and productivity.

"Over the last 10 years we have invested in many of our parks and open spaces making them among the best there are," said the local authority. "This is further demonstrated by 12 Green Flag Awards."

Executive board member for the physical environment, Councillor Tom McInerney, said:

"People often say how impressed they are with our parks and open spaces and this proves they have every reason to be."

The awards celebrate best and most improved performers in frontline services. Best performer runners up were Burnley Borough Council, East Ayrshire Council, Fife Council, Midlothian Council, Newcastle-Under-Lyme Borough Council and Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council.

Most improved performer, Wakefield Metropolitan District Council, fought off runners up Ashfield District Council, Broxtowe Borough Council, Scottish Borders Council and St Helens Metropolitan Borough Council.

Mark Bramah, APSE assistant chief executive, said: "With decreasing budgets and increasing demand on public services this year’s winners show these councils are performing better each year in public service delivery.

"Winners and finalists have taken performance management to the heart of frontline services. These attributes are critical in delivering affordable but effective local public services and they should be rightly proud of their outstanding achievements."

APSE performance networks are the UK’s largest voluntary benchmarking service for local government to help councils compare data on service quality and costs across services. Other categories included bin collections and recycling, street cleaning, community centres and school meals.

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