Bigger than Le Tour? Knaresborough scooped gold in the Large Town category at the Britain in Bloom with the RHS awards.
More than 1,000 Bloom groups from across Britain were vying for the coveted awards, of these just 70 finalists were chosen to represent their region/nation in the UK Finals, with Knaresborough representing Yorkshire.
Christine Willoughby, Chair for Knaresborough in Bloom said: “I had thought that the experience of Yorkshire in Bloom last year, with the excitement of the Grand Depart of the Tour de France and the 100 days Festival could not be beaten but I was wrong. This year, competing in the national Britain in Bloom competition has been just as marvellous.
"The whole community was helpful and supportive, right through from the schools to the senior allotmenteers, whose allotment plots were bursting with colour and productivity. Everything went well and the only regret was that the judges didn’t have longer to enjoy our special town.”
The Britain in Bloom with the RHS awards ceremony is a chance to celebrate the amazing work carried out by dedicated volunteers to recognise excellence, innovation and a commitment to keeping the UK’s villages, towns and cities clean, green and beautiful.
The hard work of Bloom groups across the country supplements public services – with almost 300,000 volunteers donating up to 10.9 million hours a year, equivalent to almost £70million at the National Minimum Wage. They also help to turn grey areas of Britain green and enrich people’s life through plants.
The Britain in Bloom with the RHS judging panel, headed by Roger Burnett, met with representatives of each finalist throughout the summer to assess each of the 70 Bloom campaigns against three key criteria: horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility.
Chairman of the UK Judging Panel Roger Burnett said: “This has been a vintage year for Britain in Bloom with communities across the country coming together to create wonderful floral displays that benefit not just the individuals involved, but their communities and the wider environment. Thanks to the work of Britain in Bloom, our pollinators are better supported, once neglected areas of our towns, villages and cities are turning from grey to green, and communities are coming together with a shared purpose.
“The standard of entries this year has been incredibly high. It is an honour to recognise and celebrate the work these amazing people do to build stronger, healthier and happier communities through gardening.