Friday 30 January 2015
Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) launches new business category to Britain in Bloom, as 2015 National Finalists are announced*
A new category has been launched within this year’s RHS Britain in Bloom UK Finals: Business Improvement Districts** (BIDs) will now be able to take part in their own category in the UK’s biggest community gardening campaign, RHS Britain in Bloom.
Increasing numbers of BIDs are joining the campaign, demonstrating that community gardening makes good business sense. Green and well-tended streets can help local economies flourish and create places where people want to be, which in turn produces investment, either through increased visitors or new businesses choosing to open or expand.
Three BIDs have been selected as UK Finalists in 2015. They will join 67 other communities across the UK, including towns, villages, cities and urban communities. Those invited to the UK Finals represent the very best of British community gardening.
A total of 4,132 groups take part in the RHS Britain in Bloom nationwide campaign, including those participating in the grassroots level of RHS It’s Your Neighbourhood. Groups are recognised for their achievements in horticulture as well as their efforts to engage the community and help the environment.
Although the campaign runs all year round, the run-up to the judges’ August tour is a time when communities throughout the UK unite and redouble their efforts. RHS judges assess everything from local recycling initiatives to areas of natural habitat and conservation. They also look at the management of street furniture and public parks, and evaluate how well groups are responding to climate change and engaging the community in their local Bloom activities. Following the judging tours in August, results will be announced at an awards ceremony this October.
Stephanie Eynon, RHS Community Horticulture Manager, said: “The increasing numbers of business improvement districts getting involved in the Bloom campaign demonstrates that community gardening makes good business sense. Green streets encourage people to linger longer, help to bond communities together and reduce anti-social behaviour, all conditions which help businesses to thrive. We see this over and over again in communities taking part in RHS Britain in Bloom.”
The story of Britain in Bloom began in 1964 when the tourist board wanted a way to market the country through floral displays. Since the RHS took over as the organising body in 2001, the focus of the campaign has widened to include helping the environment, strengthening communities and inspiring more people to get involved.
For more information on RHS Britain in Bloom www.rhs.org.uk/communities
Notes to editors
For more information about RHS, please contact RHS Press Office on 020 7821 3356 / email@example.com
Notes to Editors:
** A BID is a defined area within which businesses pay a levy in order to fund projects within the district's boundaries.
RHS Britain in Bloom Judging:
Taking into consideration three key criteria – horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility – RHS judges will assess public spaces such as parks, city or town centres and communal gardens as well as natural spaces including wildflower meadows and conservation areas. Judges score finalists on a comprehensive range of factors from recycling and waste management or condition of street furniture, to how much young people are aware of, and engaged with, Britain in Bloom initiatives.
About RHS Britain in Bloom
RHS Britain in Bloom is the UK’s largest community gardening campaign, involving more than 300,000 people. In 2014, the campaign celebrated its 50th anniversary as Britain’s favourite gardening campaign. As part of RHS Britain in Bloom – and its sister campaign, RHS It’s Your Neighbourhood – volunteers in cities, towns, villages, urban communities and neighbourhoods work together to improve their local environment, using gardening as a tool.
To find out more, visit: www.rhs.org.uk/communities
About the RHS
The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1804 by Sir Joseph Banks and John Wedgwood for the encouragement and improvement of the science, art and practice of horticulture. We held our first flower shows in 1820, were granted a Royal Charter in 1861 and acquired RHS Garden Wisley, our flagship garden, in 1903. From our first meetings in a small room off London’s Piccadilly, we have grown to become the world’s largest gardening charity.
Today the RHS is committed to providing a voice for all gardeners. We are driven by a simple love of plants and a belief that gardeners make the world a better place. 210 years on we continue to safeguard and advance the science, art and practice of horticulture, creating displays that inspire people to garden. In all aspects of our work we help gardeners develop by sharing our knowledge of plants, gardens and the environment.
RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262