Pontefract in Bloom Chair, Colin White

Pontefract in Bloom is very proud to announce that it has been awarded Silver Gilt by Britain in Bloom Yorkshire and committee members attended the Awards Ceremony at York Racecourse on 13th September to receive the award. This is an improvement on summer 2015 when Pontefract was awarded Silver.

A Pontefract in Bloom committee was formed in October last year with the aim of enhancing Pontefract Town Centre and surrounding district through improved floral displays. The Council is no longer able to fund flowers for our town so the committee decided to seek sponsorship from businesses and the community. This summer more than twice as many hanging baskets are displayed in town compared with last year, 72 in total of which 38 are sponsored by town centre businesses and 12 provided by First Impressions Nursery Ackworth, the provider we work with. Four new sponsored planters were also installed. The names of all the sponsors are displayed on the planter on Bridge Street next to the Magna Carta memorial. Grants were obtained from Wakefield District Housing and Wakefield Council’s Neighbourhood Improvement Fund.

Chris Pennock of Pomfret Gallery on Liquorice Way is a sponsor of Pontefract in Bloom and a member of the committee. He commented that the visible presence of more flowers this summer had brightened up the Town and must be good for business. He urged town centre businesses to participate in the sponsorship next year as the relatively small cost of a hanging basket or planter makes a big improvement to the appearance of the town and encourages visitors.

The Britain in Bloom judges’ report particularly mentioned the impressive vegetable and fruit garden at Larks Hill School and that the school’s gardening club were knowledgeable and enthusiastic. Special mention was also made of the Rose Garden in the Valley Gardens which is maintained by Friends of Friarwood Valley Gardens, the garden outside St Giles Church and the hanging basket displays outside the Tap and Barrel and Beastfair Vaults public houses.

The Pontefract in Bloom Committee are now starting to plan for next year and will be again inviting sponsors for hanging baskets and planters. The committee is also looking for new members so if you want to get involved get in touch. Pontefract in Bloom is going for Gold in 2017.

Colin White

Chair, Pontefract in Bloom