Britain in Bloom judges praise Mirfield’s ‘fantastic’ community on visit to town

Yesterday (Thursday), the Britain in Bloom judges visited Mirfield as the town proudly represented Yorkshire in the large town category of the 2022 competition.

By Jessica Barton
Friday, 5th August 2022, 3:15 pm

Britain in Bloom judges Ann Holland and Geraldine King arrived at St Mary’s Church, on Church Lane, at 8.45am before setting off on a three-hour tour of the town.

The tour, which was proudly put together by the Mirfield in Bloom team to showcase all their hard work, included a visit to the Sunnybank Neighbourhood, Greenside, Dunbottle Lane, Pinfold Close, Huddersfield Road Library, Mirfield Co-op, the train station and many other sites across Mirfield.

After the tour, the judges then headed back to St Mary's Church for lunch, where they were greeted by the Mirfield in Bloom committee, the Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Ed Anderson, the Mayor of Kirklees Coun Masood Ahmed and Rev Helen Butler.

Judges Ann Holland and Geraldine king with some of the Mirfield in Bloom volunteers.

Eight towns in total were picked for the large town category this year, including Mirfield, which is a huge achievement for the group, which was formed just five years ago.

Judges Ann and Geraldine, who are judging the eight towns back-to-back from Somerset to Cumbia, said: “There are something like 347 large towns in the UK, for Mirfield to be shortlisted as one of eight is major. Forget the judging - that is a credit in its own right.

“It’s been amazing, full of lots of surprises but what comes through is that strong sense of community - it is very much the glue that is holding everything together.

“The community is fantastic and Mirfield in Bloom just seems to have its fingers in every pie across the entire town, which is fantastic to see.

The judges were greeted by the Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Ed Anderson and the Mayor of Kirklees Coun Masood Ahmed.

“Full credit to them, it is going to be hard to mark.

“A massive thank you to the lovely people of Mirfield, they have made us feel really welcomed.”

Formed in November 2017 by chairman Ruth Edwards, the Mirfield in Bloom group has gone from strength to strength and felt honoured to represent Yorkshire in this year's horticultural showcase.

Ruth said: “The tour went very well, I think.

“They [the judges] appreciate the difficulties, they know we have just had some extremely hot weather and that a lot of the plants have suffered. They are horticulturalists so they understand all about that.

“They seemed delighted with what we saw as we went around and my first impression is that they thought we were very high on community involvement, which is what we are all about.

People of Mirfield have really taken it to their hearts and they have pulled all the stops out.

“Just to know going forward that you have got all this support behind you really gives you the confidence to do it.

“The big reward for us is not the accolades that we get, it's what the people see and what people think.

“We know that the people of Mirfield love their town, love all the flowers around. They are very proud of it and love all the work that we do.

“We can’t ask for anything more, we just know that we have the people behind us.”

Britain in Bloom is a nationwide gardening competition which inspires community groups in towns, cities and villages to make positive changes to their local environment through horticultural, environmental and community action.

It is a powerful tool for building communities and tackling local issues together.

The results for the large town category will be revealed on October 10, at an awards ceremony hosted by the Royal Horticultural Society in St Vincent Square, London.

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