BIG Meadow in Willaston has been awarded Green Pennant status.

The award recognises the ongoing work to preserve rare grasslands at the site.

Managed by the Friends of Willaston Meadow, with the help and support of Cheshire West and Chester Council, Big Meadow is classed as a Site of Biological Importance (SBI).

Mostly ‘unimproved’ grassland, the meadow has a mix of native grasses and wildflowers.

Nationally 95% of this kind of grassland has been lost, while in Cheshire it stands at closer to 98%.

Friends of Willaston secretary David Nind said: “We are delighted that Big Meadow has received this award.

“Maintaining the site has been a real community effort with pupils from nearby Willaston Primary School creating an area of native woodland with annual plantings of trees, the local WI groups helping to establish an apple orchard, and local Scouts and Guides who have planted native bulbs, trees and flower-plugs.”

Councillor Graham Smith said: “This is a great example of a community coming together to preserve, improve and protect their local area and I am delighted that all their hard work has been recognised with such an award.

“I want to congratulate not only the Friends of Willaston Meadow but all of the voluntary organisations, members of the public and young people who genuinely care and have got involved to preserve this beautiful green space.”

The Green Pennant Award is a national accolade that recognises high quality green spaces in England and Wales that are managed by voluntary and community groups.

Only green spaces that are open to the public and are free to enter are eligible to win an award through the scheme, run by environmental charities Keep Britain Tidy, BTCV and GreenSpace.