Harrold-Odell - Top Award
Bedford Borough Council’s Harrold-Odell Country Park has scooped
the top award at this year’s Campaign to Protect Rural England
(CPRE), Living Countryside Awards, which took place on
Each year, more than 300,000 visitors enjoy
the park’s peaceful surroundings. The landscape offers a widening
range of facilities while its lakes, woodland and river bank
quietly host many rare species.
The recognition was secured in CPRE’s
‘Landscape Improvement’ category.
Harrold-Odell Country Park was selected as a
prime example of how country parks should be developed and managed
to preserve a rural feel whilst catering for the needs of many
types of visitor.
It was also highlighted that the park’s
skilled management of the flooded gravel pits, alongside the River
Great Ouse, has provided the county with a popular resource for
leisure and recreational activities, whilst preserving the
ecological value of the park's habitats. The Country Park is
managed by Bedford Borough Council staff with the committed support
of a “Friends Group”.
Cllr Sarah-Jayne Holland, portfolio holder for
Community and Regulatory Services at Bedford Borough Council, said:
It’s great to have acknowledgement of this calibre. It’s a well
respected award which the borough can be hugely proud of and
reflects the hard work, enthusiasm and motivation of the staff and
volunteers at the park.”
This is the fourth year of the CPRE
Bedfordshire awards scheme, which aims to bring recognition to
landowners, individuals and commercial users of the countryside who
are making special efforts to preserve the visual appearance and
biodiversity of the county for future generations.
For further information on the park go to