Better Bankside's Bankside Urban Forest has been recognised by the Green Flag Award Scheme as one of the very best in the world. The network of streets and green spaces managed by Better Bankside joins 49 other Green Flag Community Award winners in London.
Bankside Urban Forest, launched in 2008 is Better Bankside's programme for transforming the public realm across the neighbourhood. It is a long-term strategy and partnership to channel investment into improving streets to support greater walking, cycling, and to implement more and better urban greening across the area. Since it's launch Bankside Urban Forest has delivered over 25 projects which has resulted in 1600m2 additional on street greening and planted 275 additional trees planted across the area.
Since 2013 Better Bankside has employed a full-time urban gardener to help maintain this network of spaces. Through this a popular lunchtime employee volunteering initiative has evolved, resulting in over 26 events involving 160 employees being hosted annually. Events have focussed on spaces including the on-street micro-meadows at Hatfields and Redcross Way, Warden's Grove Garden, and the recently delivered Keppel Row Garden, which incorporates an innovative sustainable drainage system.
The international Green Flag Award, now into its third decade, is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible environmental standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent visitor facilities.