30th annual garden awards to be held this week

20 September 2017 6:46PM

PRIZES will be handed out tomorrow to the winners of an annual garden contest.

Tenants and schoolchildren entered their cherished gardens into Barrow Borough Council housing service's annual garden competition and the awards ceremony will be held at Barrow Town Hall.

In the contest's 30th year 60 tenants and nine schools will enjoy an afternoon of celebrations when awards are given out in a range of categories by the mayor, Councillor Tony Callister.

As well as presentations to the schools and tenants, there will be a special presentation for the outgoing chairwoman of the tenants' forum, Pauline Charnley, thanking her for her involvement over the last 10 years on the schools' side of the competition.

Assistant director of housing, Cathy Kirk, said: "There will be a special award to Nikita Kench, aged 10, the winner of the tenants' newsletter Housing Matters children's competition.

"This was to design the top of the special 30th anniversary cake."

A former colleague of those at the town hall, Graham Smith, has been invited back to announce the winners.

It was Mr Smith who reintroduced the competition in 1987.

Last year 50 tenants and 11 schools enjoyed the afternoon despite nervously waiting to find out who had won in each category.

Chief gardener Louise Postlethwaite won awards last year.

She assembled her troops over the year in preparation for the awards season which saw her pick up a number of regional accolades.

Speaking last year, Mrs Postlethwaite said: "We are chuffed to bits, the children work so hard and every member of every year group puts in a lot of effort. The kids absolutely love it and they are all desperate to get involved; there isn't a single child that doesn't want to help out."

Last year in the tenants' section, a huge congregation of residents packed out the drawing room in the town hall to find out if all their hard work had secured them a prize.

Doreen Ballentine, 74, of Grange Crescent, Barrow, won the best first-time award as judges praised her "beautiful harmonious planting scheme".

Caroline McGuirk, 33, and Stewart Landsburgh, 47, of Newbarns Road, Barrow, were also praised for transforming their sloped lawn into an impressive vegetable garden.

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