Town's garden competition effort judged

Judging for Ottery in Bloom

Judging for Ottery in Bloom - Credit: OIB

The Ottery in Bloom team are on tenterhooks after playing host to a Britain in Bloom Judge.

Like the current Olympic Games, there are gold, silver and bronze awards to be won in the South West category of the competition. 

Despite the setbacks from the weather and Covid-19, everybody agreed that the town continued to look good.

The Community Volunteers had completed their big litter pick, the Town Council carried out grass cutting, shrub tidying and weeding duties, meanwhile the all-important deadheading had been expertly executed by the Ottery in Bloom team.

Ottery in Bloom coordinator of SW in Bloom Keith Spittlehouse said: “The arrival of the judge from Bristol was awaited with slight trepidation but we were quickly put at ease.

“We met at Otter Nurseries where we were given an area in their excellent coffee shop to set up the meeting with our display board showing recent activities and parts of Ottery which the judge would not have time to visit.

“Short presentations were made by the Town Mayor and members of the Ottery in Bloom team and photographs taken before the judge was driven round the town.

Ottery in Bloom's entry is judged

Ottery in Bloom's entry is judged - Credit: OIB

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“The route was based on the town's Heritage Trail leaflet which, although now eight years old, was a useful basis for showing off Ottery at its best.”

Among other stops, the judge visited St Saviour’s Bridge which had been repaired following vehicle damage; the Ottery Help Scheme and Recycling in Ottery; the town's conservation area and the churchyard where the site of the proposed Coleridge statue was pointed out.

Keith said: “We now await October when the awards will be made to the successful towns and villages which entered the South West in Bloom competition. 

“By then the sprint medals from the Olympics will long be forgotten but Ottery is hopeful that the marathon task by Ottery in Bloom will result in an award all the townsfolk can be rightfully proud of. 
 
Britain in Bloom is the UK's longest running gardening competition. It provides a regional and nationwide platform for community groups to brighten up their town or city. Many groups also report wide-ranging social and environmental benefits.

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