Yorkshire in Bloom is a voluntary regional organisation that administers the Britain in Bloom Campaign in North, South, East and West Yorkshire, North and North-East Lincolnshire. Britain in Bloom is the largest horticultural campaign in Europe. Each year the campaign grows in size and importance, involving more people, groups and organizations, creating more and more lasting improvements to local environments.
These annual competitions are organized to encourage communities of all sizes to make a positive – and most importantly – lasting improvement to their local environment for the benefit of local people. The very nature of Yorkshire in Bloom encourages and develops community spirit and civic pride whilst promoting responsibility for planting, cleanliness and maintenance.
On Thursday 19 April, York will be under scrutiny as the Yorkshire in Bloom Judges arrive for their spring visit to assess the city for the regional competition. The city has participated in the competition every year since 2007 – 2010 and has previously been awarded the Silver Gilt. Last year however, the city did not enter the competition but instead had the honour of representing the region in the 2011 national finals.
This spring the judges will tour the city of York paying close attention to detail as they assess whether the city’s horticulture meets the Gold standard with regards to its floral displays, green spaces and local neighbourhoods whilst taking into account community involvement.
Specific sites that will be visited across York, aside from the city centre, include: Brunswick Organic Nursery, Bustardthorpe Allotments, Merchant Adventurers Garden, York St John University, Hazel Court Eco Depot, Glen Gardens, Dringhouses Primary School and Askham Bog.
Councillor Sonja Crisp, Cabinet member for Leisure, Culture and Social Inclusion, said: “Once again the whole city is looking fantastic and everyone has been working hard all year to get York in tip top condition, not only the day but for all our residents, visitors and businesses. 2012 is a busy year for York and the In Bloom competition is not just about flowers. It’s about us all being proud of York and our own local areas too.”
In a normal year the city is judged in both the Spring and Summer on the following criteria:
• horticultural achievement – impact, residential and community gardening, businesses areas and premises and green spaces
• environmental responsibility – conservation and biodiversity, resource management, local heritage, quality of the local environment and pride of place
• community participation – development, continuity, communication, community involvement, year round involvement and support
York has 18 entries in the competition this year, reflecting both the support and efforts of the community for yet another year of Yorkshire In Bloom. Keep your eyes peeled about the city this spring and keep your fingers crossed that York hits those Gold standards the judges will be looking for this April.
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