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Flower power rules as 30 win Bloom contest gongs
Buy this photo » Rose Hill Primary School pupils, from left, Becky Barrett, 10, Roxanne Lee, 10 and James Lusanta, nine, with corn they have grown at their school and their trophy. Picture OX62040
FLOWER power won the day as more than 30 people and groups walked away with Oxford In Bloom awards.
The winners of the 2013 heat of the annual competition have been announced by Oxford City Council after a gruelling judging process.
Among the winners was Rose Hill Primary School, which scooped the gold award in the “junior Oxford in bloom — school or community group” category for the second year running.
Learning outdoors co-ordinator Steph Randall said: “The children are over the moon. They are thrilled to have won for the second year in a row.
“We won for our garden, which has lots of different flowers and vegetables, like sweetcorn, growing in it.”
The gold award in the “best small commercial display” category went to the Green Gables Guest House in Abingdon Road.
Owner Narinder Bhella, a veteran of the competition, had been away for the announcement but said he was delighted.
He said: “I’m surprised, but I’m very pleased to have won the gold award.
“We have entered every year since 2002, and we’ve won gold before, and silver and bronze a few times.”
Floral displays at the Templars Square Shopping Centre in Cowley won a gold award in the large commercial display category.
Centre manager Aaron Bayliss said: “Of course we’re very pleased. We certainly do take pride in our floral displays.
“It’s an opportunity for us to make the best of what is otherwise a fairly functional building, and we hope by doing so we make a positive contribution to the city’s entry to the Britain in Bloom competition.
“This was one of the places visited on the judges’ tour, and we’re looking forward to hearing the results.”
The prizes were given out by Oxford’s Lord Mayor Dee Sinclair, who said she had been impressed with the level of entries.
She said: “What was particularly positive was seeing the number of new entries coming into the competition.
“It’s nice that there’s that element where we have people who have been gardening for years who produce wonderful displays but it’s good to achieve a balance.
“I was particularly impressed with the younger entries and the schools which took part. “The Rose Hill school entry was a particularly good scheme.
“It’s spurred me on. I’ve been out in my garden planting wallflowers.”
The city is also celebrating after it won the silver gilt award trophy in the Thames and Chilterns heat of the national Britain in Bloom awards on Wednesday. It also won the regional award for best roadsides and roundabouts.
The finals will be held in October.
ROLL OF HONOUR
- Best Kept Small Garden: Chris Perks (Gold) Sheila & Errol Smith (Silver) Roy Cox (Bronze)
- Best Kept Large Garden: Richard & Sue Milner (Gold) Gerry Webb (Silver) Bebe Speed (Bronze)
- Most Beautiful Container: Chris Perks (Gold) Darrell Smye (Silver) Ann Booker (Bronze)
- Most Beautiful Balcony: Carmel Whelan (Gold) Betty Fletcher (Silver) Mr & Mrs King (Bronze)
- Junior Oxford in Bloom: Emily Graves (Gold)
- Junior Oxford in Bloom – School or Community Group: Rose Hill Primary (Gold) East Oxford Primary (Silver)
- Display by University or College: The Rhodes Trust (Gold) Merton College (Silver) University College (Bronze)
- Community Garden Therapy Award: St Francis Court (Gold) Beehive Restore (Silver) St Mungo’s Project (Bronze)
- Best Small Commercial Display: Green Gables Guest House (Gold) Business Headington & Partners (Silver) South Oxford Bowls Club (Bronze)
- Disabled Entrant: Sheila & Errol Smith (Gold) St Francis Court (Silver) Gerry Webb (Bronze)
- First-Time Entrant: Darrell Smye
- City cup (for long standing entrant): Michelle Robbins
- Jack Hodges memorial cup (outstanding effort: Residents of Jackson Cole House
- Sid Cunning cup (outstanding contribution) Patsy Bateman
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