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Derry and Strabane strike gold in Britain in Bloom Awards

23 October 2018

Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Grounds Maintenance teams have earned yet more recognition after they received the Gold award in the small city category at the Royal Horticultural Society’s 2018 Britain in Bloom Awards in Belfast at the weekend.

The local authority were chosen as one of the Councils to represent Northern Ireland following their success in last year’s Translink Ulster in Bloom awards.

Finalists in this year’s competition were judged on their horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility with the RHS judges visiting communities from the end of July after months of hot and dry weather.   

A total of 76 groups from across the UK competed in 12 categories with each vying for a gold, silver gilt, silver or bronze medal with Derry and Strabane claiming the highest possible accolade.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor John Boyle, welcomed yet another award for Council’s Grounds Maintenance and Street Cleansing teams who were recently honoured at the NI Amenity Council and the Ulster in Bloom Awards.

“This latest accolade is particularly prestigious as they were vying with Council areas all over the UK,” he noted.

“Council’s Grounds Maintenance and Street Cleansing teams work closely with their community partners to ensure the parks, greenways and streets of our city are blooming all year round and that community participation and involvement was a crucial element of the judging process.   

“Council’s plant and floral presentations, grass cutting and cleansing regimes are a key element to the physical and environmental regeneration of our region set out in the Strategic Growth Plan.

“This Gold award is just recognition for the dedication, imagination and experience the teams and their community partners consistently deploy in ensuring our City and District look resplendent all year round.

 Darren Share, Chair of the RHS Britain in Bloom judges added: “This year’s finalists faced the most challenging conditions the competition has ever seen with much of the country under snow and ice at the start of spring followed by the joint-hottest summer on record.
“That so many groups have walked away with top medals is remarkable and a reflection of communities’ hard work, ingenuity and horticultural know-how.” 

 The 54th Britain in Bloom awards ceremony was held at the Belfast Waterfront Hall.

Finalists collected their awards from Chris Bavin, presenter of BBC Two’s Britain in Bloom TV series and guest speaker.

The full results for the RHS Britain in Bloom 2018 can be viewed here: www.rhs.org.uk/bloomawards2018.