London success in RHS Britain in Bloom competition


London’s community gardeners are celebrating today after walking away with two category wins and a haul of medals in the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) annual Britain in Bloom competition, announced at a ceremony last night.

Four finalists represented the capital following success in the London in Bloom competition last year. A total of 68 groups from across the UK competed in 12 categories with each also vying for a gold, silver gilt, silver or bronze medal.

The City of Westminster and Hale Village in Tottenham, a first-time finalist, both won their respective categories – City and Urban Community – and took home gold medals.

Westminster saw off competition from Reading, Norwich and Oldham to take the top spot, wowing the judges with its exotic-style bedding in Victoria Embankment Gardens, floating pocket park on Paddington Basin and green walls.

Hale Village, a modern ‘urban village’ development, has been innovatively designed to include large areas of community space filled with trees, wildflowers and other plants, while bird boxes and feeders attract wildlife from nearby Walthamstow Wetlands. Residents joined in this summer by planting up their balconies with edibles such as beetroot and tomatoes.

Canary Wharf added another gold to the tally with its 1,000 trees and 8,000 square metres of green roofs bringing health and wellbeing benefits to the 120,000 people who live and work there.

Finalists are judged not only on their floral displays but environmental and community efforts. Each was visited by a pair of RHS judges over a fortnight from the end of July.