Three West Leeds communities were represented at the annual Yorkshire in Bloom awards – and all came back with terrific results.
The awards mark horticultural excellence – but critically the awards encourage communities to make a positive and lasting improvement to their local environment for the benefit of local people – it is not just about planting flowers and hanging baskets.
The very nature of Yorkshire in Bloom encourages and develops community spirit and civic pride whilst promoting responsibility for planting, cleanliness and maintenance.
Here are the results featuring Calverley, Calverley Victoria Park, Kirkstall and Pudsey (which we also commented upon here after they improved on last year’s Silver Gilt).
Calverley – Gold award
“Once again, the enthusiastic and dedicated members of Calverley in Bloom gave a lovely welcome to the Yorkshire in Bloom judges, who were given a very informative tour of the community.
“Calverley benefits from having a variety of different areas, enabling the in Bloom group and its partners to develop different planting schemes and garden styles.
“All areas, including St Wilfred’s Church, the Methodist Chapel, the schools and the Old Vicarage Nursery, were well maintained and clean. The Brookfield Memorial Garden is developing well. The park is a real asset to the community – well used and well maintained. The portfolio produced for the judges was excellent!”
Calverley Park – Gold award
“Calverley Park is a great asset to the community. It is very well maintained, clean and tidy, and benefits from sponsorship from local company Zenith.
“There are a variety of sports catered for and there are active bowling and cricket clubs in the park. The area is well used by the local school and other community groups, and the children’s play area has been recently improved with new equipment.
“There are a variety of horticultural displays, including traditional bedding, a lovely perennial bed created by the WI and an ‘edible’ bed.”
Pudsey – Gold
“Pudsey in Bloom is a very enthusiastic and well organised group, who are making a real difference to Pudsey.
“Indeed, the judges were stopped by enthusiastic members of the public who wanted to say how much the work of the group is appreciated! This strong community support is obviously matched by that from local businesses and councillors.
“The group has a strong identity in all it does, from the tabards to printed and online publicity. The ‘Friends’ initiative is good, as is the working relationship with the Allotments Association. Pudsey Park is lovely and a real asset to the community.
“Creating themed planting throughout the town centre, with the cherry trees in the large planters echoing those in the park, is well thought out and well executed, as are all the various planting schemes throughout the entry. Well done!”
RHS It’s your neighbourhood category – Improving award
“The judges were met by one of the younger member of the bloom group who were very enthusiastic and proud to show us what they had achieve in only their second year. They have certainly taken on and improved areas of Kirkstall which had previously become overgrown and neglected.
“The group’s work has begun to expand with regular meetings taking place in the local pub, litter picks on an evening each month, looking after and maintaining the local War Memorial, creating wildlife areas on derelict land by the new Kirkstall shopping centre and planting up and maintaining several beds by the leisure centre.
“Not only have they maintained and improved the areas but also looked into the history and heritage of the sites which they explained very well. Good to see such a group and hope they can expand for the future.”
James Corah from Kirkstall in Bloom will be writing a report for the Dispatch on the Yorkshire in Bloom judging day.
More detailed feedback from the judges can be found here.