Duthie Park joint runners up in UK’s Best Park competition

One of Aberdeen's best-loved parks has been made joint runner-up in a competition to find the UK's Best Park.

Duthie Park Competition

Duthie Park, which is run by Aberdeen City Council, came top in Scotland in the contest, which is run by national charity Fields in Trust and decided on by votes from members of the public.

It was pipped to the post for the top UK title by Telford Town Park in Telford, which was nominated due to its sensory garden and fantastic mix of biodiversity. Gheluvelt Park in Worcester which was nominated because of its interactive water feature, play area and gardens was also a runner-up.

Aberdeen City Council Communities, Housing and Infrastructure vice-convener Jean Morrison said: "Even though we didn't win the UK title, we were the only park in Scotland to be shortlisted which is a great accolade for Aberdeen in itself, as the award is voted for by the public which it makes it all the more special.

"The nomination and then to be shortlisting was a great 'thank you' for all the hard work carried out by park staff and the community groups which help make it such a beautiful place for people to visit.

"Duthie Park, which is 134 years old, re-opened in 2013 aftera £5 million refurbishment, with funding provided by Aberdeen City Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

"We hope many more people will come and visit the park as a result of the award and come and discover the many things to see, including playparks, formal gardens, walks around the park and beside the River Dee, water features, café, Japanese Garden, and Winter Gardens."

Duthie Park was nominated by Aberdeen-based parenting blogger Lifewithmunchers.com as: "Not only is it host to regular events for the city, but as the home of the Winter gardens, boating pond, vast green areas and the most outstanding kids' play areas, this park is a great all-rounder for a family day out".

The park comprises of 44 acres situated beside the River Dee within easy walking, cycling and bus journeyof the city centre. The 134-year-old park had a £5 million refurbishment and re-opened in 2013, with funding provided by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Aberdeen City Council.

It has the biggest range of facilities of all the city's parks including water features, playparks, Japanese Garden, and year-round facilities in the Winter Gardens and café.. It also has great walks around, and from the park, such as Old Deeside Railway Line and the River Dee.

A total of 122 UK parks were nominated for the competition and more than 8,000 votes were cast – the contest was entirely decided by public votes.

Fields in Trust's search for the UK's Best Park started several weeks ago when communities from across the country were encouraged to nominate and vote for their favourite local park, sports field or playground they believed would be worthy of the title.

Helen Griffiths, Fields in Trust chief executive, said: "Whilst Duthie Park may not have come top of the public vote all those who participated should be extremely proud of their efforts in helping the park to be shortlisted. Fields in Trust protects popular and well-loved green spaces like Duthie Park ensure that the local community continues to get lots of enjoyment out of it.

"We would be pleased to work with the local authority help secure it as public open space for future generations to enjoy."