Come on Cullybackey folk! Here come the bloomin’ judges

Members of the Cullybackey Community Partnership L R Elizabeth Boyd, Patrick Fisher, Bertie McNeilly, Margaret Murphy and Ruth Orr are pictured with local artist Mary Cochrane
Members of the Cullybackey Community Partnership L R Elizabeth Boyd, Patrick Fisher, Bertie McNeilly, Margaret Murphy and Ruth Orr are pictured with local artist Mary Cochrane

Cullybackey people are being urged to put on a show of flower power as the village prepares to welcome the judging team from Britain in Bloom.

The Royal Horticultural Society judges will visit on August 12 as Cullybackey bids to win the large village category and therefore be recognised as one of the cleanest, greenest and most beautiful places in the UK.

The Cullybackey Community Partnership will be looking to impress the judges by showing them the very best of community horticulture and leading the judges on a tour of the village taking in areas including private residences and businesses, Shellinghill Park and Millennium Walk along the Maine River.

Cullybackey will be assessed across three key criteria: horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility.

Ruth Orr, Chairperson of the Cullybackey Community Partnership, said “We are delighted that the whole village has gotten involved including Spar Cullybackey, NISE, Cuningham Memorial Church, the Scouts and Girl Guides, Buick Memorial Primary and Cullybackey College - a real show of community spirit. We are confident Cullybackey will be in full bloom for the Britain in Bloom judges arrival.”

The Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr Paul Reid said: “The Cullybackey Community Partnership volunteers have given up so much of their time to plant wonderful floral and wildflower displays, install bird boxes, litter pick, remove weeds and ‘green the grey’ by brightening up forgotten corners. The village looks wonderful and it is a real credit to all involved. I have no doubt Cullybackey will do well on judging day.”

Andrea Van-Sittart, RHS Head of Community Outreach said: “The Britain in Bloom judging gives groups the chance to showcase all the wonderful work that they do, all year round. Over the past year alone, our national finalists have planted over a million trees, shrubs, bulbs and other plants, making places greener and more sustainable, and providing areas for the whole community to relax and enjoy. I wish all of this year’s finalists the very best of luck.”

Britain in Bloom is the UK’s biggest community gardening campaign – up to 300,000 volunteers are involved in transforming our villages, towns and cities into greener and more pleasant places to live.

The results are announced at the Britain in Bloom awards ceremony in Llandudno, North Wales on 27 October.

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