Gold award success for Sidmouth and 'outstanding' community projects praised by South West In Bloom

Lynette Talbot and Peter Endersby from Sidmouth In Bloom with garden designer James Alexander-Sinclair, centre

Lynette Talbot, chair of Sidmouth In Bloom; James Alexander-Sinclair, garden designer and main speaker at the South West In Bloom awards; Peter Endersby, Sidmouth In Bloom, with the Sargent Trophy. - Credit: Big Image Photography

Sidmouth’s parks, gardens and floral displays have once again been recognised with an array of awards from South West In Bloom. 

Sidmouth with Kingsbridge receiving the South West in Bloom Champion of Champions trophy

Sidmouth with Kingsbridge receiving the South West in Bloom Champion of Champions trophy - Credit: Big Image Photography

The town won joint Gold in the Champion of Champions category, sharing the top prize with Kingsbridge, and the Sargent Trophy for the ‘outstanding effort and dedication’ of the Sidmouth In Bloom (SIB) volunteers. 

There was also plenty of praise for community gardening projects involving other groups throughout the town, under the ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ part of the awards. Six projects were rated ‘outstanding’: The Sidbashers’ removal of Himalayan balsam, run by SIB; the Coral Seating areas and Wave Border involving the Coastal Community Hub, SIB and Friday Gardeners; the Sensory Garden (SIB), the Queen’s Jubilee Copse & Livonia Road Shrubbery (Sid Vale Association), Friends of the  Byes, the Chairman’s Garden (Sidmouth Croquet Club) and Sidmouth Arboretum. The Volunteer Inn Seating Area, a first-time entry for It’s Your Neighbourhood, was rated as ‘thriving’. 

Members of Sidmouth In Bloom and the Mayor of Weston-super-Mare at the South West In Bloom awards

Sue Goode, Lynette Talbot, Anne Leake and Derek Price of Sidmouth In Bloom with the Mayor of Weston-super-Mare and their Champion of Champions award - Credit: Big Image Photography

The South West In Bloom awards ceremony, on Thursday, October 7, came just days after an exhibit at the Chelsea Flower Show featuring floral sculptures made by Sidmouth In Bloom won a Gold Floral Award and was named the best exhibit in the Great Pavilion. 

The floral sculptures, designed by Sidmouth In Bloom’s chair Lynette Talbot, depicted a father and baby elephant in a jungle surround, with the theme ‘Diversity and Protection’. Sidmouth In Bloom said Diversity was influenced by the story of Elmer the patchwork elephant who was different from his grey-skinned family, but eventually accepted by the tribe. Protection stood for the safety of elephants worldwide that have been persecuted by man for their ivory. 

The elephants formed the centrepiece of the South West In Bloom/Stonebarn Community Floral Feature in the pavilion. The sculpture attracted a lot of interest from visitors including royal family members the Princess Royal and her husband, the Count and Countess of Wessex and the Duke of Kent.   

Sidmouth Town Council and Sidmouth In Bloom will be holding a ‘Celebration of ‘Achievements’ on Saturday, October 30 at the Methodist Church, where SIB will formally present its own awards to winners of the garden competition. Sidmouth In Bloom’s other achievements during this year will also be highlighted at the event. 

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