Brandon named as Best New Entry at Anglian in Bloom awards
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
The horticultural achievements of a west Suffolk town were recognised at the Anglia in Bloom awards.
Brandon were awarded the Best New Entry at the ceremony which took place in Bury St Edmunds on September 12.
The town was also recognised with a silver gilt in the Town category (6,001 to 12,000 residents).
The town was entered by horticultural group Brandon in Bloom for the first time this year.
Rachel Sobiechowski, the group’s horticultural advisor and secretary, said: “To receive the best new entry award exceeded our expectations.
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“My legs were like jelly when we had to go up on the stage. I was a bit shell shocked.
“We have already been discussing plans for next year. To be entered into three out of 12 specialist categories on our first attempt and to get best new comer has been overwhelming.”
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They group are involved in numerous activities including organising and take part in litter picks, planting flowers and trees to help brighten up the town, and adopting areas to maintain and look after.
During the visit by the Anglia in Bloom judges in July, they were taken to 11 areas around the town which are maintained by the volunteer group which boasts a 30 strong team of enthusiastic helpers.
The judges visited areas including Brandon Country Park, Glade Academy and Seymour’s Gardens.
They finished at The Wedge, an area which contains memorial trees, sponsored by residents to remember loved ones, and a number of plants.
There they also met nine-year-old volunteer Alfie Keeley and presented him with a special certificate.
The youngster, who was recognised at this year’s Best of Brandon Awards, spends almost every night watering plants, weeding and keeping the garden bright and cheerful.
After viewing the town’s efforts, Anglia in Bloom judge Nigel Bloxham said: “We were very pleasantly surprised with what is here. The Wedge was a star feature.”
The group are currently seeking funding for their Anglia in Bloom 2019 entry. They will be part of the Tesco Brandon Bags of Help scheme. People can vote for the group by dropping tokens in the Bright Brandon box in store during this month and October.