Residents, community groups, tourism businesses and schools are being encouraged to enter the Island’s 2016 Wight in Bloom competition, which was officially launched at the National Trust’s Mottistone Gardens on Monday April 18th.
Wight in Bloom is an annual gardening and community competition that celebrates our fabulous Island and the efforts of our green-fingered community.
The free to enter competition, sponsored by Red Funnel and organised by Visit Isle of Wight since 2015, encourages and rewards those who take pride in their environment and make the Island a colourful and vibrant place to live and visit.
Wight in Bloom is part of Visit Isle of Wight’s Garden Isle marketing campaign, which this year coincides with Vist England’s Year of the Garden 2016 and the 300th anniversary of the birth of the 18th century garden designer, ‘Capability’ Brown.
Organisers of Wight in Bloom are keen to attract a bumper crop of entries from gardeners at all levels and in all 11 categories, especially from children – a sentiment expressed by Wight in Bloom’s patron and TV gardener, Alan Titchmarsh, who has said that he would like to see more kids in the garden this summer and beyond because he thinks it is vital children are connected to the earth.
David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “Without question, Wight in Bloom brings communities together and everyone involved does such a great job in transforming towns and villages and creating a blaze of colour across the Island.
“This year we want the Island to look even more fantastic and I very much hope that we get lots of new entrants, especially from younger people and those involved in the Island’s tourist industry.”
This year sees 11 categories in the competition, including Best Small Front Garden, Best Large Front Garden, Best Young People Initiative, Best Commercial Garden, Best Senior Citizen Complex, Best Community Floral Project, Best Small Tourist Attraction, Best Large Tourist Attraction, Best Creative use of a Small Space, Best Coastal Garden and Best Edible Garden.
The closing date for entry into Wight in Bloom is 30th May. Judging will take place from 27th June to 25th July when local horticultural experts will tour the Island to assess the variety of floral displays, community projects and school gardens. There is a limited amount of funding available to support parish and town councils purchase plants. For more information, contact email@example.com
Entry forms and the list of 11 categories will be on-line at http://www.redfunnel.co.uk/wightinbloom from 18th April. Forms can also be picked up at Island tourist information points, including the Guildhall in Newport, and selected Island garden centres.
Kevin George, Red Funnel’s CEO, said: “As 2016 is the Year of the English Garden and the 300th anniversary of the birth of 18th century garden designer ‘Capability’ Brown, we are hoping Wight in Bloom 2016 will be one of the biggest yet. Gardeners of all ages are encouraged to enter one of the 11 categories to help ensure the Island is looking its best this summer.”
The awards will be presented by Alan Titchmarsh MBE VMH DL at a ceremony at Osborne in September.
For further information, please contact Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Visit Isle of Wight, tel. 01983 521555, ext 29/07766 705672, firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors
In the foreground: David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, and Jo Hampson,
Customer Greeter, Red Funnel Ferries.
Behind (in no particular order): Winners’ from last year’s Wight in Bloom competition:
Heath Morgan from Aspire (Overall Winner and winner of Best Community Floral
Project 2015), Guy Eades, Healing Arts, IOW NHS Trust (Best Senior Citizen Complex 2015),
Ann Bunney, the Havelock Hotel (Best Accommodation Garden 2015), David Mansfield (Best
Small Front Garden 2015), Mandy O’Reilly from the Buddle Inn, Niton (Best Public House
Garden 2015), Robert Moore, Head Gardener, Mottistone Gardens (Best Tourist Attraction
Garden – Large 2015) and some of the children and their teacher from Bembridge CE Primary
School (Best Young People Initiative 2015).
Categories for the competition are
1. BEST SMALL FRONT GARDEN (Under 5 metre frontage)
2. BEST LARGE FRONT GARDEN (Over 5 metre frontage)
3. BEST COMMERCIAL GARDEN (Public House, Restaurant, Shops, Café, Business, Hotel/Guest Accommodation/Self Catering/ Caravan sites)
4. BEST SENIOR CITIZEN COMPLEX (Private and Public Sector, Healing and Meditative gardens)
5. BEST YOUNG PEOPLE PROJECT (Schools/youth groups)
6. BEST COMMUNITY FLORAL PROJECT (Community Groups, Parish or town councils, High Streets, Church Grounds)
7. BEST SMALL TOURIST ATTRACTION GARDEN (free to enter and paid admission tourist attractions are eligible)
8. BEST LARGE TOURIST ATTRACTION GARDEN (free to enter and paid admission tourist attractions are eligible)
- BEST CREATIVE USE OF A SMALL SPACE (window box, balcony, hanging basket, recycled objects for containers, vertical planting)
10. BEST COASTAL GARDEN (best use of the environment, use of plants tolerant to seaside location, recycling of coastal finds)
- BEST EDIBLE GARDEN (mix of flowers, vegetables and herbs, can be a source of food and a Decorative display).
About Visit Isle of Wight
Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight. As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org
About Red Funnel
Red Funnel is the original Isle of Wight ferry company with roots tracing back to 1820. Based in the UK port of Southampton, Red Funnel carries 2.3m passengers and over 800,000 vehicles on its ferry route between the UK port of Southampton and East Cowes and 1.1m passengers between Southampton and West Cowes on its Red Jet Hi-Speed service.
In addition to ferry travel, Red Funnel is the only cross-Solent operator to offer ferry inclusive bonded holiday accommodation, attraction tickets, festival and event tickets and activity packages. Sub-brands include ‘Red Jet’ (the Hi-Speed passenger only ferry service serving West Cowes) and two food & beverage brands, ‘Steam Coffee Company’ and ‘ReFuel’.
The Company is a founder member of Visit Isle of Wight Ltd, the Island’s not for profit destination management organisation and Red Funnel sponsors or supports most of the Island’s premier events including the IW Festival, Bestival, Cowes Week, Isle of Arts, IW Literary Festival, IW Newport Jazz Festival, IW Walking Festival, Ventnor Fringe Festival and Wolverton Manor Garden Show as well as a range of community and niche interest events.
Red Funnel’s 2016 Charity of the Year is Isle of Wight charity, Ability Dogs for Young People.
For further information or images, please contact Carswell Gould
Tel: 023 8023 8001