Gardening gold is the aim as area blossoms

Members of Kippax in Bloom outside the Cottage Garden. Picture: John Clifton
Members of Kippax in Bloom outside the Cottage Garden. Picture: John Clifton
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Green gains in Leeds have seen the city reach the national finals of Britain in Bloom 2014.

As the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) celebrates 50 years since its campaign began, Leeds has joined Yorkshire gardening greats Kippax, Harrogate, Dunnington, Filey and Upper Hopton in the esteemed final shortlist.

The city survived stringent regional judging, which saw more than 1,000 entrants whittled down to 72 finalists.

Two RHS judges are scheduled to meet community representatives and tour local projects such as bedding displays, recycling initiatives and areas of conservation in July or August as the city goes for gold this summer.

Coun Mark Dobson, Leeds City Council’s lead member for environment, said: “Our entry for the In Bloom competition this year involves all sections of the community, from residences to businesses, schools and the council. The competition will not only improve our city’s environment but help to foster a sense of civic pride through our partnerships across the city.”

The shortlisted groups have been chosen for their efforts to engage the community, for demonstrating commitment to helping the environment and for horticultural excellence.

Yorkshire’s contenders will find out if they have triumphed at an awards ceremony in Bristol in October attended by representatives of all 72 finalists.

Stephanie Eynon, RHS community horticulture manager, said: “It’s about volunteers of all ages and walks of life gaining recognition for their extraordinary efforts to improve streets and neighbourhoods.”

Britain in Bloom started in 1964 and has been run by the RHS since 2001.

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