GREEN-fingered volunteers are holding their breath as Britain in Bloom judges begin judging the best floral displays across the country.
Sunderland’s entry into the large city category sees it up against Hillingdon, west London, and Leeds.
Judges are visiting gardens and projects across Sunderland to see what the city has to offer.
Last summer, more than 70 locations were selected to represent their region in the final of the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) 50th annual contest. Each entry is hoping to score top marks and be announced as category winner at the awards ceremony in Bristol in October
“These are truly special awards especially at a time when we are all facing economic challenges on the resources available,” Sunderland City Council’s portfolio holder for city services, Coun Michael Mordey, said.
“They are the result of a team-work and partnership approach.
“The judges from Britain in Bloom have been visiting projects and gardens across the city, and hopefully they can’t fail to be impressed by the skill and dedication of all those responsible for these fantastic displays.
“I am proud of the achievements of everyone including volunteers, community groups and of course council staff who have been involved in these projects.
“Regardless of the final outcome, to be considered for a prize in these annual awards which recognises such very high standards, is an achievement in itself.”
This year the UK’s largest community gardening campaign celebrates its 50th anniversary.
RHS judges Sue Wood and Kim Parish will meet community representatives and go on a tour of local projects, assessing In Bloom campaigns against three key criteria: horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility.
Nick Knowles, RHS Ambassador for community gardening, said: “The groups that have made it to the final stages represent the very best in community gardening and it is their passion and community spirit that have got them this far.
“I wish all the finalists the very best of luck and urge more people to get involved in the campaign so that we can continue to grow on the success of the last 50 years.”
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