Helix Park gardener named Green Flag Award's Employee of the Year
A Bo’ness man’s work tending The Helix Park earned him the Employee of the Year title at a celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Green Flag Award.
Gardener Ryan Argent received the accolade during an online event held on Tuesday, November 23 to mark the ceremony’s silver jubilee.
Hosted by Keep Britain Tidy, Keep Scotland Beautiful (KSB), Keep Wales Tidy and Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, eight awards were presented to recognise employees, volunteers, youths and initiatives linked to the Green Flag Award, an international benchmark for recreational outdoor space.
The Employee of the Year award was the only one presented in Scotland and was shared between Ryan and Gordon Mason, of Hyndburn Council, England, after a judging panel decided they both deserved equal recognition.
Judges noted how Ryan was the only gardener working at The Helix at the height of the pandemic.
They said: “With colleagues furloughed, he was the only employee maintaining the park for almost a year and he did that whilst helping his gran who was shielding and couldn’t leave the house.
“Ryan is said to give 100 per cent customer service and always does everything with a smile on his face.”
Ryan said: “I am absolutely over the moon and delighted to have won this award.
“To be even nominated or made a finalist was already a great accomplishment but to win is just incredible.”
Barry Fisher, KSB chief executive, said: “I would like to congratulate Ryan on his Employee of the Year award.
“We know from those people managing our parks that the increase in users during the pandemic has put pressure like never before on them.
“Every single Green Flag Award winner provides an invaluable service to the local communities that it serves – creating a safe space to play, to think, to work out – and they helped to address many of the health and well-being challenges we faced as a country during lockdown.
“Good management can often go unnoticed, but it’s thanks to the incredible work of people like Ryan, the often-unsung heroes working so hard behind the scenes, that we are able to experience well-managed, welcoming parks across Scotland.”
The Helix Park was last month presented with a Green Flag Award in recognition of the way it’s boosted locals’ health and well-being amid the pandemic.