North West 'Britain In Bloom' judges Mel Kirby and Sarah Hewitt visited a sun drenched Alderley Edge on Tuesday, 24th July, to assess the village's third entry into the Britain in Bloom competition.
They were given an afternoon tour of the village that included viewing gardening projects at Alderley Edge Community Primary School, The Ryleys School and the Alderley Edge in Bloom Group allotment at Chorley Hall Lane before heading to the Hough to visit Peter Woollam's enchanting organic ornamental kitchen garden.
From there they were taken up to The Edge visiting Castle Rock and the Wizard's Well before meeting the National Trust representative Chris Widger and representatives from the Derbyshire Caving Club.
Finally they walked down a blooming London Road decked out with bunting and brightened up with newly painted bollards. They viewed the display of colourful planters and hanging baskets along with the woodland by Waitrose with its eclectic Bug Hotel built by local Scouts and Alderley Edge in Bloom volunteers.
The judges tour of the village was hosted by Leslie Cox, Chair of Alderley Edge In Bloom and the Group Secretary, Christine Munro. Along the way they met some of the volunteers who have given their time to beautify the village with regular litter picking, flower planting and vegetable growing to support the village luncheon club. Local parish councillors Craig Browne and Geoff Hall then joined the judges and volunteers for afternoon tea and further discussions at The Botanist.
Leslie Cox commented "The Judges gave mostly positive feedback during the tour with Mel Kirby describing Peter Woolham's garden as the finest he had ever seen! The visit to the mining museum behind the Wizard was worthwhile communicating valuable environmental information to the judges. Perhaps the biggest compliment from the judges was Mel's observation on how litter free Alderley Edge was on the day. All the long hours of regular litter picking had not gone unnoticed which is very pleasing to us."
Now the Bloom group will have to wait until November to discover what level of award they will receive for 2018. Whatever the result, the groups efforts have been regular praised and respected by villagers, engagement with local shops and businesses, the group has welcomed in new volunteers and many new friendships and associations have been generated.