The standard and number of entries in this year’s Warwick in Bloom was higher than ever, according to town councillor Mandy Littlejohn.
On Monday she will proudly lead a panel of judges from the regional Heart of England in Bloom competition around the town - but this week it was a purely home-grown contest for community groups, shops, schools, guest houses and anybody else who cared to enter.
Cllr Littlejohn, who is chairman of the community and culture committee, said: “I guess our success in winning a gold medal in the Heart of England 2013 competition must have inspired more people to enter this time - and we’re absolutely delighted.
“The whole town is ablaze with flowers in gardens, window boxes and hanging baskets.”
The top prize for Warwick went to the residents of Priory Walk in Cross Street who won the Retirement and Sheltered Accommodation category before going on to notch up the most overall points for their efforts around their 25 individual homes. Chris Hope, chairwoman of Priory Walk Residents’ Association, said: “Each of us has our own small plot to tend. I grow a few runner beans amongst my petunias and dahlias but some of the other plots are spectacular.”
The runners-up were the residents of Montgomery Court in Coventry Road.
In Community Gardens first place went to the Saltisford Canal Trust, followed by the residents of Antelope Gardens.
In the Schools section the winners were Emscote Infants, led by teacher Claire Snoddy, who wowed the judges with everything from their lavender and pansies to the recycled “insect hotels” hanging in the trees. Runner-up was Ridgeway School.
In Shops: Torrys Hardware, West Street, 2nd Pimpernel Shoes, Market Place.
In Hotels, Pubs, Guest houses and Bed and Breakfast accommodation: 1st place The Thomas Lloyd (Wetherspoons) in Market Place, 2nd Park Cottage B&B, West Street.
Domestic large gardens: 1st Mr D. Howells in Archery Fields; 2nd Mr M. Swaby, Dodd Avenue. Domestic small gardens: 1st Mr M Robertson and R. Eddy of West Street, 2nd May Smith, Saltisford Gardens.
Window boxes/hanging baskets: 1st kathy Spackman in St John’s Court; 2nd Mr M Robertson and R Eddy, West Street.
The new Community Streets award went to Albert Street, runners-up Woodcote Road.