Hutton Cranswick wins silver gilt prize at Britain In Bloom
THERE IS nothing more tranquil than an English village at the height of summer.
And Hutton Cranswick ranks with the best of them.
The village, near Driffield, has flowered with a Silver Gilt prize at the Britain In Bloom National Awards.
Gina Simpson, Hutton Cranswick's In Bloom co-ordinator, said: "This has been our first year of entry in the current Britain In Bloom competition."
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"It has been an honour to represent Yorkshire on the national stage.
"Obviously, there's a tinge of disappointment we were not overall winners, but the In Bloom group and the community can feel very proud of what has been achieved."
She put the village's success down to families' original gardening projects.
"The extra motivation has produced some very creative projects to enhance our local environment – a wildflower garden, cycle sculptures planted with red and white roses for the Way Of The Roses cycle route and themed planting in focal areas to represent the elements," Ms Simpson said.
One of the village's highlights is the garden at its train station.
The In Bloom team worked hard to keep the flowers there fresh.
"We have continued to improve the station garden, where the replica train is an attraction," Ms Simpson said.
The village even got its own mascot for the competition – a sculpture called Crawford The Crane.
Ms Simpson said: "To bring in a sense of fun, members created Crawford The Crane as our mascot."
"He, like many of the projects begun this year, will continue to inspire us for years to come."
The In Bloom team found out about their award at a ceremony on Saturday in St Peter Port, Guernsey.
It was hosted by One Show presenter Matt Baker and attended by 450 gardening champions.
Hutton Cranswick was selected by judges as a finalist to represent Yorkshire in the Large Village category.
More than 1,200 communities enter the Royal Horticultural Society competition each year.
Out of these, 72 finalists were chosen.
The Britain In Bloom judges were led by Roger Burnett.
He chaired a panel of 14 volunteers who marked each settlement against three key criteria – horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility.
Mr Burnett said: "We had the privilege and pleasure of visiting the most environmentally aware communities in Britain and meeting the wonderful people responsible for them."
"The best thing about being a judge is meeting the volunteers. They're hardworking and resilient. Whatever's thrown at them, whether it's a hosepipe ban or flooding, they will find a way around it."
Broughshane in Northern Ireland was the competition's overall winner.