OOTS: Some Blooming Good News!
It's been a rather good week for Wiltshire's public planting. Cricklade, often the lone banner carrier for Wiltshire was last night named 'The Champion of Champions' at the Britain in Bloom awards ceremony at St. Andrew's, which means it's deemed by the judges to be the best in Britain :)
Cricklade has long been on my to do list of posts, not only because of its Britain in Bloom prowess but also because it's home to over 90% of Britain's wild fritilliary population. Yesterday's good news means it's moved up my list of OOTS must do posts for next summer. I've also added Corsham to the list as it was recently awarded Gold in the South West region's Britain in Bloom awards, marking steady progress from an inaugural silver in 2009, through to silver-gilt last year and now gold.
Finally, Friday morning saw us at Bradford on Avon's station ready to catch a train to Weymouth as a birthday treat for NAH. It meant I just had time to take the above photo of the station's planting from the railway bridge. Bradford is one of the stations* on The Heart of Wessex Line, with an active group of 12 volunteers who've been looking after the station's displays since 2009. Their hard work has paid off as they're one of 5 finalists (out of 300 entries) in the Best Station Garden category of the Association of Community Rail Partnerships Awards. The awards ceremony was on Friday, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed...
* = it's also one of 675 stations which may be unmanned in future. The local taxi firm which is based on the station's forecourt is hosting a petition to keep the ticket office open. We certainly found it useful on the day and the cleaners in attendance whilst we were there making sure everything was spick and span as well as all the flowers meant we felt a real sense of community in this part of Bradford on Avon :)
Update: Congratulations are due to Devizes and Trowbridge who were also awarded Gold in the South West Region's BIB awards. It shows how many of Wiltshire's towns (including Calne who traded in an inaugural silver last year for a silver gilt this) now consider Britain in Bloom as a way of showing pride of place. I'll add a link to this year's winners as soon as it's up on the RHS website.