Sidmouth gardener wins top EDDC tenant garden award

Five Sidmouth council house tenants excel in annual EDDC garden competition

COUNCIL tenants in Sidmouth and Newton Poppleford don’t just have green fingers – theirs are golden.

Carol Bourne of Arcot Park, Sidmouth, was overall winner in this year’s annual Tenant Garden Competition run by East Devon District Council.

On Friday she received her award from Councillor Jill Elson, communities portfolio holder, one of three to hand out prizes and certificates to winners.

Phil Tucker, managing director of Skinner Construction, presented Thomas Kimber of School Lane, Newton Poppleford, with a gold award after jointly winning the new Disabled Garden category, sponsored by King’s Garden Centre, Exmouth, new sponsors to the competition.

John Golding, head of housing at EDDC, also presented prizes. Another new category was Best Lawn.

Another big success, this year 40 tenants entered the competition, and Axminster youngster Chloe Butler, won the Youth Novelty Garden.

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Mr Kimber, 90, said he had been entering the contest for around 15 years and had won something nearly every year.

“I am very honoured to think they give me a prize. I can’t do the digging now so I concentrate on keeping the garden tidy. I’ve been a keen gardener since leaving school.”

Judge, horticultural consultant Kieron Bewes, said tenants had excelled themselves with their creative gardening.

Of Mr Kimber’s efforts he said: “He has a monster of a garden and since breaking his hip has worked to the strengths he can do. He has vibrant bedding schemes, with a big show of colour and it’s nice to see really healthy plants.”

Of Carol Bourne’s overall win, he said: “She is cracking. She has taken on the communal garden at the flats in Arcot Park. She started last year and has taken on board advice I gave her then.

“She has a really nice flower border and has grown loads of veg, which are of really good quality.”

Sidmouth produced five winners in this year’s competition. All winners enjoyed a prize-giving tea at Knowle.

This year’s other sponsors were Kieron Bewes, Sidmouth Garden Centre, Jardine Lloyd Thompson Insurance, Tenant & Leaseholder Customer Panel and St Bridget Nurseries.

Prizes for a draw were donated by Otter Nurseries, Otter Rotters, EDDC StreetScene and Housing tenant volunteers.