Wednesday 5 October 2016
Royal Horticultural Society President presents top prison gardening prize
A Preston prison has won the coveted Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Windlesham Trophy Award for the best prison garden in England and Wales.
HMP Wymott, a Category C facility located in the village of Ulnes Walton near Leyland, has a population of 1,126 prisoners, 50 of whom work on the institution’s extensive gardens. HMP Wymott regained the trophy after an eight-year gap; it previously lifted the gardening prize in 2008.
Royal Horticultural Society President Sir Nicholas Bacon presented the trophy, a specially engraved Green Goddess fire engine bell, to HMP Wymott prisoners and staff during a special ceremony at the prison on 14 September.
Lead RHS Judge Robert Haslam, who with fellow RHS judges Fiona Crumley and
John Wheatley assessed the five finalists – the others were HMP Albany, HMP Parkhurst, HMP Eastwood Park and HMP Thorn Cross praised HMP Wymott for presenting a scrupulously tidy series of gardens.
He added: “The first impressions were excellent and the standard was maintained throughout the visit. A wide range of plants were used displaying evidence of thoroughly planned designs to create a range of feature gardens, each creating a real impact.
“The prisoners displayed good horticultural awareness and skills in commercial and protected cropping, in addition to the ornamental areas. The ethos and enthusiasm engendered by the land based activities managers was clearly evident with the engagement of prisoners in a creative and constructive manner demonstrating focus, pride and interest in their endeavours.”
HMP Wymott’s Acting Governor Nicki Smith said: “At Wymott, we are delighted to have been named winners of the 2016 Windlesham Trophy competition.
“The award reflects a lot of hard work by our staff and prisoners. We are committed to having a well-presented site, which creates a positive backdrop for all the work we do, and horticulture is a key part of this.
“I am grateful that the judges have acknowledged all the excellent work that has been put in by our gardens team. They deserve this recognition.”
HMP Albany came second in the competition with HMP Parkhurst, HMP Eastwood Park and HMP Thorn Cross completing the line-up.
For more information, please contact Garfield Myrie in the RHS Press Office on 020 7821 3060 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors
About the RHS
The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1804 by Sir Joseph Banks and John Wedgwood to inspire passion and excellence in the science, art and practice of horticulture. Our vision is to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener, healthier, happier and more beautiful place. We believe everyone in every village, town and city should benefit from growing plants to enhance lives, build stronger, healthier, happier communities and create better places to live.
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. At our gardens and shows and through our scientific research, publications, libraries and our education and community programmes we inspire a passion for gardening and growing plants, promote the value of gardens, demonstrate how gardening is good for us and explain the vital roles that plants undertake.
The RHS is committed to bring the joy of gardening to millions more people, inspire the next generation of gardeners and invest in the future to safeguard a £10.4 billion industry employing more than 300,000 people. We are entirely funded by our members, visitors and supporters. RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and help us secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 020 3176 5820, or visit www.rhs.org.uk/join .
RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262