States of Jersey, Sir Winston Churchill Memorial Park, States of Jersey

Sir Winston Churchill Memorial Park is great, but that is not quite enough, says manager of parks and gardens for the States of Jersey's transport and technical services division Derek Noble.

"This is why the Green Flag Award is so important," he explains. "Although we think the park is good, the flag gives an external benchmark of excellence from experienced judges who are independent and give constructive feedback.

"But the benefits go way beyond the flag itself. The application process makes you stop and think about what you've got, what you want and how you will go about achieving the goals. When you work on a park day by day you can sometimes lose sight of the park and what you need to do."

The 2.5ha park sits in St Brelade's Bay - one of the most popular bays on Jersey - on the east coast of the island. Land for the park was purchased in 1961 and construction began in 1965 on a slope just above a sea wall. Views of the sea, formal garden and natural woodland areas are idyllic.

Formal seafront gardens border the coastal promenade with lawns, formal bedding and a pond, all looked after by an in-house horticultural team at the government of Jersey. One of the main features is an artificial waterfall that runs down a small granite cliff.

If Jersey is unique, the memorial park is no less so. Tender plants in the park's dry garden survive because of the warm microclimate of the park. Meanwhile, look carefully and you might pick out scurrying inhabitants of the rarest kind. Jersey is the only place in the British Isles with a native population of green lizard and a small population has made Sir Winston Churchill Memorial Park its well-kept home.

But efforts to improve do not stop when you have unfurled a Green Flag. Though the seafront is popular, the green space is quieter and the parks' team is looking at drawing people into the space with new signage, interpretation panels and a children's play area, says Noble.


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