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Starbeck takes gold in Harrogate’s haul of Yorkshire in Bloom awards

PUBLISHED: 00:00 12 November 2015

Starbeck in Bloom began sewing the seeds of its success on the high street

Starbeck in Bloom began sewing the seeds of its success on the high street

Archant

The green-fingered folk of Starbeck have proved that goodwill can grow if you replace gloom with blooms in your community.

Following a depressing spate of vandalism on the high street almost 20 years ago, a group of like-minded individuals with time, energy and tubs to spare decided to set up their own Starbeck in Bloom group. At the time, morale was at an exceedingly low ebb but the tide soon began to turn when businesses brightened their shop-fronts with flower tubs and launched a community garden competition.

That small but significant act sowed a vital seed that has continued to grow in the subsequent years. The group first entered Yorkshire in Bloom in the urban category in 1998, taking top spot in 2001 and 2002, summer winner in 2003, a spring first in 2005, then gold in 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014.

And now they’ve done it again, scooping gold in the urban communities section of Yorkshire in Bloom – one of more than 20 accolades for the Harrogate district.

Harrogate in Bloom and Rudding Park also took gold in the large town/small city and hotel categories, while Woodlands Community Gardens were deemed ‘outstanding’- the highest accolade – in the neighbourhood category, in which the judges’ also gave them a discretionary Community Champion Award.

Councillor Michael Harrison, Harrogate Borough Council’s cabinet member for the environment, is perhaps not surprisingly delighted with the district’s enviable success.

‘Our floral reputation is second to none and the town and surrounding areas rely heavily on it as a tourist attraction so these accolades are very important – and very welcome,’ he said.

‘As well as highlighting the best floral displays across the county, Yorkshire in Bloom recognises the hard work and dedication of the volunteers, businesses, schoolchildren, community groups and other organisations that goes into creating such eye-catching designs and displays.

‘I would also like to thank the council’s parks and street cleansing teams, and their office support staff, all of whom have contributed to making this years’ awards ceremony yet another successful one for the district. Their efforts really bring the villages and towns in the district to life and add a wonderful splash of colour to delight residents and visitors alike.’

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