Judges visit Havering for Britain in Bloom
PUBLISHED: 17:54 02 August 2016 | UPDATED: 17:59 02 August 2016
The borough's blooms were blossoming, bees were buzzing and the skies were only slightly drizzling as the Britain in Bloom 2016 judges visited today.
Following months of hard work from volunteers, Havering Council and green-fingered experts, two judges from the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) were treated to a tour of the best green spots.
Rae Beckwith, who has been a RHS judge for nine years, said he was delighted by the variety of groups they met on the jam packed three-and-a-half hour tour.
He said: “We met a lot of people that should be credited with making a difference.
“They have worked very hard to improve the green spaces around Havering.”
At Havering Town Hall, in Main Road, Romford, the judges met the Mayor of Havering, Cllr Philippa Crowder, who said she was feeling “very positive” about the judge’s report.
She said: “When I pull into the town hall every day, I think it looks absolutely wonderful.
“I think the carpet bed outside the front is especially amazing.
“I sent a photo of the flower bed to Buckingham Palace, and invited the Queen to come see it personally.
“Sadly she had to decline due to her busy schedule, but she sent a very nice letter.”
The borough was selected from more than 600 entrants to compete in the city category and faces opposition from Tower Hamlets, Oldham and Aberdeen.
Kate Dagnall, the fellow RHS judge, said boroughs are judged on three main points.
She said: “We look at horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility.
“They often all connect, but those are the three main factors we consider.”
The judges will travel over 1,000 miles visiting all the sites, and Mr Beckwith says each report takes three hours to complete.
The results will be announced at an awards ceremony in October.