Town Awards 2013
The town’s floral displays gardens and green spaces were judged by the Committee of Dartmouth Green Partnerships which awarded prizes in 10 categories and two special awards (see below). The awards took place at the AGM on Friday 7 March 2014 at the Guildhall. More than 60 people applauded the efforts of shops, businesses, pubs, and residential areas to make their gardens and properties look good with planting displays. Cups, shields and crystal bowls were among the prizes.
The event was attended by Mayor Elect, Rob Lyon, Commander Jason Phillips, BRNC, and RHS assessor and mentor, John Goulden. Mr Lyon said: ‘I can see that you love what you do in the gardens. We will work closely with you and others for greater cohesion in the town and amongst councils.’
Commander Phillips said that the town and the college were very close and he was delighted that poppies will feature strongly in displays this year in remembrance of those who died in World War I. He was pleased that the award winning ship of flowers, which marked the BRNC’s 150th anniversary in 2013, will be re-created at the Royal Horticultural Society’s Tatton Park display in July.
Dartmouth won gold in both local and national RHS Britain in Bloom competitions in 2013. Mr Goulden, who used to manage Royal Avenue Gardens in the 1980s explained how the RHS judges assess entries. Its Your Neighbourhood schemes were ‘the essence of bloom’ and community involvement. He was thrilled that Townstal will enter for the first time under the new Pennant Award, especially as Townstal gardens won many of DGP’s town awards. He said that Britain in Bloom was not just about hanging baskets and bedding displays. These were part of our heritage, but not always appropriate, and judges were looking for more sustainable planting and for evidence of community involvement.
Chairman Stevie Rogers said that the change of name from Dartmouth in Bloom to Dartmouth Green Partnerships was to emphasise that ‘we work together with many other groups and that we are facilitators’. The gold winning success in 2013 was due to the efforts of the whole town.
She said that the theme for the year ahead was Growing for Gold using pollinators, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Britain in Bloom, and planting of poppy displays to commemorate the start of World War I. She hoped that Town Award winners and others will create displays around the themes. Townstal’s entry for the new Pennant award was an exciting challenge for 2014.
Stevie said that the new community greenhouse, which is being planned for the gardens with South Hams District Council, will become a Centre for Horticultural Excellence, and DGP will be fund raising for a new greenhouse.
There will be a major new event in the DGP calendar in 2014 – the first Midsummer Flower Festival is being planned for 21-22 June, in Royal Avenue Gardens and the Old Market, with a plant fair, environmental stalls, competitions and displays, a floral safari and folk dancing.
Treasurer Debbie Morris reported that DGP had ‘done more with less funds by reducing our costs and creating our own displays’. She thanked Sponsors and Friends for their important contributions, which she hoped would continue.
Chairman Stevie Rogers said: ‘This year people in the town made an exceptional effort to make their homes and businesses look good, many echoing our theme of hot colours and edible plants and taking into account sustainability as we have tried to do in our own displays. The whole committee was involved in the judging and was unanimous in agreeing the winners.’ Stevie said:’ We were very pleased to see so many new entrants for the awards as well as old favourites.
The standard was high and there were some very imaginative planting schemes.’ Overall, entrants were given extra points for self-made displays and baskets, and sustainability was important – saving water, re-using materials and plants, and mulching were good examples, boosting scores. Members of the committee decided that they would not include their own gardens and displays in the town judging this year and felt that it was important to encourage and reward new entrants.
LIST OF THE WINNERS
B&B Guest House/Hotel 1. Valley House 2. Avondale 3. Charity House
Best Display, Shops & Businesses 1. Canvas Factory 2. Gem Shop 3. Simon Drew
Best Pub/ Club Joint first: Seven Start & Windjammer 2. Crab & Bucket 3. Floating Bridge
Best Sheltered House/Nursing Home etc. 1. Churchill Court 2. King’s Quay 3. Holdsworth House
Best Container Display, Residential 1. 25 Townstal Crescent 2. 9 Roseville Street 3. 11 Coombe Road
Best Secret Garden, Residential 1. 57 Britannia Avenue 2. 55 South Ford Road 3. 111 Britannia Avenue
Best Front Garden, Residential 1. 111 Britannia Avenue 2. 76 Britannia Avenue 3. 43 Davis Road
Best Overall Display, Commercial The Canvas Factory, Foss Street
Best All Year Round, Commercial Valley House, Victoria Road
Special Award, Commercial Dart Marina Hotel
Special Award, Residential Britannia Avenue/ Ivatt Road Area
Photos of some of the winners below: