Delamont Country Park gets environment award

Delamont Country Park gets environment award

13 October 2021

DELAMONT Country Park has secured a coveted green flag award.

Environmental charity Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful has bestowed the honour on the popular park which nestles on the shores of Strangford Lough.

The green flag accolade is an internationally recognised certification for environmental quality management for parks and open spaces and is increasingly sought after in Northern Ireland, with a 27-fold increase in participants since the local programme opened in 2008.

In total, 84 parks and open spaces have been recognised with a green flag award this year including four new entrants on the winners’ rostrum.

Rowallane councillor, Billy Walker, is delighted that Delamont has received an award and has paid tribute to Newry, Mourne and Down Council staff who manage the facility.

He described the country park as one of the “jewels in the district’s tourism crown” and hopes that plans to make Delamont event better via a number of new initiatives will come to fruition.

The local authority is keen to make one of the best county parks of its kind even more attractive and is confident that people will continue to visit the stunning location in huge numbers.

“Council officials are committed to enhancing what the country park has to offer to help 

attract even more visitors to what is one of the district’s most popular tourist facilities,” he said. 

“The fact the Delamont has now secured a green flag award will make it even more attractive in my opinion.”

The 200-acre country park already attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year with Cllr Walker and those who use it on a regular basis confident that it has the capacity to do so much more.

The Rowallane politician has also welcomed major investment to significantly upgrade the Education Authority’s base in the grounds of the country park which is used to deliver a variety of outdoor purists courses.

Cllr Walker said while the park offers a children’s adventure playground, stunning walks and the hugely popular Steamer’s cafe and miniature railway, it has the potential to offer so much more.

He said while does not advocate spoiling the beauty of the area in any way, there are hundreds of acres of space which could be used to boost the park’s tourism offering.

Cllr Walker said further enhancing the park is critical to its future development, providing new attractions and creating a boost for nearby businesses in Killyleagh.

He added: “I hope that awarding the green flag is the next step in the process to make Delamont event better. It is a major asset and, given its scale, there is so much more that is should be offering.”

Rachel Vaughan, who manages the green flag awards programme for Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, said she hoped people would use the winning parks as an incentive to visit some new places in one of the nicest seasons of the year.

She added: “We all love a walk through the autumn leaves and it’s uplifting to discover a new spot to enjoy. 

“When you visit a green flag park or open space you can be reassured that the location is being managed to a really high standard as they’ve been through a rigorous judging process that assesses sites across a range of issues including their horticultural standards, cleanliness, biodiversity and safety.”