Northumberland’s Love Parks campaign catches judges’ eyes again!

An online campaign about people’s love for Northumberland parks has caught the eyes of Keep Britain Tidy judges for the second year running.  

The council won the national award last year, and has been shortlisted again for 2019 - for a dynamic campaign featuring a wide range of people including Her Grace the Duchess of Northumberland and BBC TV’s Carol Malia.

The Duchess said she loved coastal locations with her young family while Look North presenter Carol remembered a funny family story when her father had a wardrobe malfunction when he was carrying her on his shoulders at Plessey Woods Country Park!

This year’s campaign theme was ‘It started in a park’ - and George, an elderly gentleman from Blyth, remembered coal trains passing Ridley Park in the town when he played there at three years old.

Regular visitors to Druridge Bay Country Park - Peter and Julie - spoke of their special memories of the park - where they met on a date 15 years ago. They’ve been together ever since, are now happily married, and have remained regular visitors. 
 

Northumberland County Council ran the campaign last July, and it has now been highlighted as one of the best in the UK by the national environmental campaign charity Keep Britain Tidy - their Love Parks Award recognising outstanding campaigns that ran during Love Parks Week. 

The Love Parks initiative aims to ensure that residents and visitors use local parks and protect these important green spaces, and the award was open to entries from all local authorities in England and Wales.

Cllr Glen Sanderson cabinet member for environment and local services said:  “Our teams do a fantastic job in promoting the great parks we have across Northumberland.

“This campaign gave us a golden opportunity to enhance the promotion of our parks and the activities and things that people can enjoy there to a wide audience across Northumberland and the wider region.  

“We also wanted to support pride in the parks for those who work there, for our volunteer groups and for those who visit and enjoy them.  Local services staff and parks team members encouraged residents and visitors of all ages to show why they love their local park - having their photo taken with the Love Parks heart, or making a video clip.

“It is a great credit to our parks staff and communications team that the campaign has been commended by the judges as worthy of shortlisting for a national award for the second year running.”

Photos and videos were posted on the council’s social media channels throughout the week, building a colourful campaign which demonstrated the fantastic features of the 12 parks across the county that are managed by Northumberland County Council.

Forty nine posts gained a huge 54,485 impressions on Twitter, the equivalent of 18% of the population of Northumberland.  Potential reach for the posts totalled over a million.

On Facebook 23 posts and videos reached 77,802 people and engagement was 80,495.

You can view a short video about the Love Parks campaign here. 

A further award submission from Northumberland has also been shortlisted - with the Morpeth Litter Blitz group and Dai Richards recognised in the Litter Heroes category.

Winners will be announced at the annual national Keep Britain Tidy network conference in February.
 
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