We're rooting for our town

PUBLISHED: 12:22 27 July 2006 | UPDATED: 11:56 04 May 2010

WAITING FOR A RESULT: Shirley Overall, John Ison, Philip Eden, Bill Boardman (judge), Mike Anthony, Bob Hardwick (judge), Sheila Friend-Smith and Mike Axford. Photo: HELEN DRAKE 3288

WAITING FOR A RESULT: Shirley Overall, John Ison, Philip Eden, Bill Boardman (judge), Mike Anthony, Bob Hardwick (judge), Sheila Friend-Smith and Mike Axford. Photo: HELEN DRAKE 3288

THE judging s over ... now the nervous wait begins. After months of preparation and effort on the part of dozens of organisations and individuals, the time came on Friday for Ely to be judged in the Anglia in Bloom competition. Ely mayor John Ison, along

THE judging's over ... now the nervous wait begins.

After months of preparation and effort on the part of dozens of organisations and individuals, the time came on Friday for Ely to be judged in the Anglia in Bloom competition.

Ely mayor John Ison, along with three members of the Ely in Bloom team, including chairman Sheila Friend-Smith, showed competition judges Bob Hardwick and Bill Boardman around the city.

"Despite hot temperatures, everywhere we stopped volunteers were ready to talk about their lovely floral contributions to Ely in Bloom," said Mrs Friend-Smith.

"The judges were dazzled by the flowers in Militia Way and were full of admiration for the community effort."

She said the window boxes outside city pubs also drew praise, as well as the displays in Jubilee Gardens and St Peter's Church Garden.

The Lantern Primary School showed judges its new flowerbed, while Ely's Brownies gave them a brief tour of their imaginative planting outside Oliver Cromwell's House.

Will Temple, head gardener of the King's School, told the judges about the work he and his team had carried out in enhancing The Gallery, Barton Square and the gardens at the entrance to Cherry Hill Park.

The judges' tour demonstrated the efforts of local schools, East Cambridgeshire District Council's gardening team, the Earth charity, Friends of Jubilee Gardens, Ely Guides and The City of Ely Perspective's Philip Eden.

Now the Ely in Bloom Group must wait until September to see how Ely has fared against 10 other entrants in the "big town" category.

Anglia in Bloom judge Bob Hardwick said: "I've been very impressed by the standard so far. It looked very good and I was very pleased to see the level of community involvement."

Mr Ison said Ely's bid represented a great deal of hard work since its launch in February.

"There has been more community involvement this year," he said.

"The message is getting through that there is a lot to be gained from making Ely look good and feel good."

He said the Ely in Bloom shop window display was won by Steeplegate, with last year's winners The Little Shop as runner-up.

"It was a very close-run thing but we came to the conclusion," he said.

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