Community groups win praise in Royal Horticultural Society awards

Members of Shotton Partnership 2000 Ltd with their certificate.
Members of Shotton Partnership 2000 Ltd with their certificate.

Community groups have been recognised in a prestigious regional awards scheme.

The projects have been recognised through the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ (IYN) programme.

The CAFÉ Together Project in Easington Colliery achieved ‘Advancing’ for their work rejuvenating outdoor spaces to cultivate healthy food and vegetables.

Dennis Donnini Memorial Garden in Easington Colliery and Shotton Partnership 2000 Ltd were all given ‘Thriving’ awards.

The programme is part of the RHS’ Britain in Bloom competition and gives certificates of achievement to groups which work to ‘green up’ their communities.

All the schemes received up to £500 towards their work through the council’s Community Grant Scheme, which is currently open to applications from volunteer led environmental groups.

Pauline Walker, the council’s senior civic pride officer, said: “We’re thrilled with the hard work put in by all volunteers and community groups and the results of the IYN scheme are testament to the commitment everyone has shown in developing their environmental projects.

“There is still time for community groups to get funding for an environmental improvement scheme next year, so we urge people to apply.”

Coun Brian Stephens, the council’s Cabinet member for neighbourhoods and local partnerships, added: “It’s incredible that people have given up their precious time in volunteering and have either cleaned up, greened up or produced healthy produce for the benefit of their communities.

“Many of the schemes will provide long-lasting environmental benefits to all who live or work in, or visit these areas.”

Easington Community Garden and the Seed Pods project was also recognised in the awards.

Groups wishing to apply for Community Grant Scheme funding in 2018 must do so by Friday, December 8. Email civicpride@durham.gov.uk or call 03000 261 000 to request an application pack.