Gardeners from Hampden Park took home two silver awards at this year’s South and South East in Bloom awards ceremony on Friday (September 11).
The judges look at each entry’s horticulture and gardening efforts, each entry’s approach to environmental responsibility and community participation.
Hampden Park was recognised with a silver gilt award for the Princess Diana Memorial Garden in the ‘small park’ category and a further silver award in the ‘urban community’ section for Hampden Park in Bloom.
Residents Olive Woodall and Angela Kirby attended the ceremony.
The women have been working side-by-side on Hampden Park in Bloom for many years.
Angela Kirby said, “This is brilliant!
“We have taken part in the competition for the last 15 years.
“It’s fantastic to win silver but Olive is 90 next year so we are definitely going to go all out to get a gold to mark the occasion!”
The Princess Diana Memorial Garden was created in 1997 by Hampden Park resident Bertie Wilmshurst.
In 2011, Bertie Wilmshurst received the South and South East i Bloom Commendation Award for dedicating his time and energy to developing and maintaining the garden.
At the 2011 ceremony, Bertie Wilmshurst said, “I’m very pleased and surprised to have received this award.
“I was inspired to create the Memorial Garden 14 years ago as I liked Princess Diana.
“I visit every day to look after the garden.”
The awards ceremony for 2015, held at Brighton and Hove Albion’s American Express Community Stadium, was co-hosted by Jim Buttress – seen on BBC’s Big Allotment Challenge –and fellow celebrity gardener Chris Collins.
This year also marks the launch of Southern Water’s new water efficiency plan, which aims to save six million litres of water per day in the South East of England.
Southern Water’s Water Efficiency Manager, Ben Earl, said, “This is a great competition that celebrates the South East and its beautiful places and spaces.
“Southern Water has been a proud sponsor of the event for over a decade and a half and in that time we been able to help thousands of gardeners save water through the promotion of water efficiency.
“Thank you South East in Bloom and the gardeners of the South East!”
South and South East in Bloom is the largest horticultural campaign in the region involving hundreds of communities each year.
Participating communities create lasting improvements to their local environment for the benefit of those that live, work and visit there today, and in the future.
In the past 15 years the competition has judged more than 3,000 gardens, parks and other outside spaces across the region.
South and South East in Bloom Chairman, Peter Holman, added, “The number of entrants has increased by 700 per cent since the partnership began in 2000.
“Over that time we have helped change attitudes about the conservation of water and scarce resources.”