'In Bloom' community competitions launched

Rachel McNabb

Reporter:

Rachel McNabb

The Mid and East Antrim in Bloom campaign and community competition has been officially launched.

The launch coincides with the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) National Gardening Week and green fingered citizens are being encouraged to help make the Borough beautiful.

Mid and East Antrim has established a reputation as an award winning Borough thanks in no small part to our Mid and East Antrim In Bloom campaign which encourages everyone who lives in the Borough to think about their local environment and how flowers, plants and gardens can enhance it for people and wildlife.

There are many ways to help, for example, filling a hanging basket, sowing wildflower seeds or installing a nest box - there is something for everyone to do to ensure our Borough looks its best.

By actively supporting our ‘In Bloom’ campaign and competitions residents not only brighten our Borough but often enable our towns and villages to go on to achieve success in Ulster in Bloom and Britain in Bloom awards.

At the 2018 RHS Britain in Bloom Awards Ballymena won a Gold Award as well as the discretionary Wild About Gardens Award.

Cullybackey will be competing in the RHS competition this summer and are hoping to bring home another Gold Award.

Council and community volunteers in Mid and East Antrim had another successful year at the 2018 Translink Ulster in Bloom Awards with Cullybackey winning both the Special Award for Biodiversity and the Large Village Category, Brighter Whitehead winning the Community Rail Halt Award for the seventh consecutive year, and James Perry from Ahoghill in Bloom winning the Ulsterbus Community Champion Award for his outstanding and longstanding contribution to bloom.

The Mid & East Antrim in Bloom community competitions are a great chance for people to be recognised for their gardening skills at a local level.

Applications are welcome from all residents of the Borough and entry is free of charge.

There are 13 community competitions with great prizes available for winners and runners up in each.

General categories include Best Kept Front Garden, Best Kept Allotment Garden, Best Kept Commercial Premises, Best Kept Community Planting Scheme and the Gardening for Wildlife Award.

There are also four competitions specifically for our young horticulturalists – Painting Competition, Poetry Competition, Best School Gardening Project and the hotly contested Tallest Sunflower Competition.

Three new awards this year are the Volunteer of the Year award, Young Volunteer of the Year award and Outstanding Contribution to in Bloom.

Do you have a neighbour with a beautiful garden or know a hard working volunteer who always goes the extra mile who deserve recognition? Why not consider nominating them?

For more information and to keep up to date you can go to www.midandeastantrim .gov.uk/inbloom

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