Washington Village claims 'Best Village' award in Northumbria in Bloom competition

Villagers are celebrating after winning a top award for its gorgeous gardening efforts.

Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 11:45 am
Updated Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 10:03 pm
Washington in Bloom volunteers celebrate the award with the Mayor and Mayoress of Sunderland

Washington Village has been awarded gold in the Northumbria in Bloom awards for the third year running and named Best Village in the Northumbria region for the first time.

The news comes after volunteers worked throughout the spring and summer to ensure the area stood out to the judges.

The prestigious prize is awarded for “exceptional” in “environmental responsibilities, community participation and horticultural knowledge”.

A tribute to a solider in Washington Village

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Joan Atkinson, chairwoman of Washington Village in Bloom, said: “Our Bloom volunteers turn out every Sunday morning to make Washington Village a very special place in the North East.”

Over the last year, volunteers in the village have worked on a number of projects to make the village stand out, including creating a soldier tribute on the village green, installing seats for the elderly and maintaining four bug hotels.

Joan said winning the award has a big effect on the community.

“It is absolutely important to our local community - we get lots of visitors to our very small village,” she said.

Flowerbed display in Washington Village

The Northumbria in Bloom competition has a long history. It launched in 1964, covering areas from Berwick in the north to Cleveland in the south and spanning west to Greenhead.

It aims to bring cheer to the country through community gardening and Washington Village are already making plans to retain their best village title.

“We have several ideas for next year to be able to obtain gold again and hopefully keep our Best Village Award,” said Joan.