Rustington wins big at gardening competition

Rustington Parish Council's Chairman Cllr Jon Street and Chairman of the Rustington in Bloom Committee, Steve Perry, receiving the Gold Award for Town Centre of the Year from BBC Surrey/Sussex Gardening expert and DigIt programme host Joe Talbot. Picture: Ciaran McCrickard Photography
Rustington Parish Council's Chairman Cllr Jon Street and Chairman of the Rustington in Bloom Committee, Steve Perry, receiving the Gold Award for Town Centre of the Year from BBC Surrey/Sussex Gardening expert and DigIt programme host Joe Talbot. Picture: Ciaran McCrickard Photography

Rustington was a blooming success at a competition for greenfingered towns and villages across the South of England.

On Friday at the Amex Stadium in Brighton, Rustington was among the big winners at the South and South East in Bloom.

The village scooped gold awards in the town centre category and park of the year for Woodlands Recreation Ground, and was recognised for being the entry with the highest marks overall.

The judges’ feedback said: “This community really is the model for others to follow in terms of its commitment to the principles of South and South East in Bloom. A really impressive entry, organised and created by people who obviously care and are richly deserving of a gold award.”

Other recognition for the village included a silver gilt award for the Rustington Methodist Church Garden in the ‘our community’ category, outstanding awards in the ‘it’s your neighbourhood’ category for the Coastal Workshop, The Chaucery Memorial, The Hidden Twitten and Oakhurst Gardens, which also took home a Royal Horticultural Society National Certificate of Distinction.

Rustington Hall and the Rustington Methodist Church Garden both received ‘thriving’ awards in the night’s honours.

Speaking on behalf of the Rustington in Bloom committee and Rustington Parish Council, Carole Ward, parish clerk, said these were ‘such impressive and rewarding results for all involved’. She said: “Rustington’s community, once again, pulled out all the stops with its support for the In-Bloom Campaign, by helping to ensure that all areas of the judging criteria were met and exceeded.”

She thanked Arun District Council’s cleansing and parks departments, and Ferring Nurseries for its ‘outstanding service, expertise and dedication’.