In recognition of the outstanding efforts of all those who have worked so hard to make the town bloom in 2019, Penrith received 10 awards from ‘Cumbria in Bloom’ at their Annual Ceremony on 5th September.
Cllr Jonathan Davies and volunteer gardeners were extremely proud to receive the Town awards, which included: ‘Friends of the Lake District Trophy for ‘Best Sustainable Development Town;’ ‘Best Large Town’ Award; RHS and Cumbria In Bloom ‘Discretionary Award for Involvement of Young People,’ and the Cumbria in Bloom ‘Pride in Your Community’ Gold Award.‘ These awards acknowledge the enormous efforts of all the volunteer gardeners, community groups, individuals and businesses who have participated.
Penrith BID, who were responsible for organising the stunning beehive displays, barrier baskets and business hanging baskets, received a Cumbria in Bloom ‘Pride in Your Community’ Gold Award. All the BID blooms were sponsored by Penrith BID Levy payers, Penrith Businesses and Penrith Town Council.
The Community Gardeners were joined by a representative from Virgin Trains to accept the ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ awards on behalf of the many gardeners who volunteer such a lot of their time to create the many vibrant projects around town. Awards included: Best Churchyard Runner Up, St Andrew’s Church, Penrith; Penrith Community Gardeners Polytunnel (Thriving); 4EDEN (Outstanding); Great Dockray (Outstanding); and Penrith Train Station (Outstanding).
Town Council Officers engage with participating groups and regularly update the Penrith in Bloom Facebook Page, which keeps ‘friends’ up to speed with ‘in bloom’ developments. The Town Council also provides grant funding and/or Officer support to individuals and groups whenever needed. In addition, Town Council Officers organise the Cumbria and Britain in Bloom applications for awards, co-ordinate arrangements for judging and compile a ‘Portfolio.’ which describes the local projects, relating them to the three RHS ‘in Bloom’ judging criteria, namely ‘Horticulture, ‘the ‘Environment’ and ‘Community Participation.’
We now wait the outcome of Britain in Bloom judging at their awards ceremony, which takes place in London on 25th October, 2019. We keep our fingers crossed but whatever that outcome, participation, collaboration and mutual support has helped to build community spirit, a massively important element in making Penrith a well loved and beautiful place to live in, visit and work. Accolades to all those in the local community who take part.