‘Scent’ to judge beautiful blooms in Cleethorpes

After months of planting, watering and weeding, the day of the Britain In Bloom judging finally arrived in Cleethorpes yesterday.

The two judges of the national competition were taken on a tour aboard an open top bus.

The tour began at the Kingsway Hotel where there was a short presentation before heading towards Sea Road, Pier Gardens, High Cliff viewing area and many other resort attractions before finishing at Ocean Fish Bar for lunch.

The Cleethorpes In Bloom committee had just three hours to showcase the best the town has to offer.

Chairman of Cleethorpes In Bloom Bob Callison said: “I feel quite nervous about the judging, the same as I do every year.

“I feel confident that the resort is looking its best.

“We had good comments from the regional East Midlands In Bloom judges so hopefully it will be the same today.

“I think the resort looks fantastic, the North East Lincolnshire groundsmen have worked their socks off and I’m very proud for them to be on board with us.”

While pleased with the result, Bob admits it has been no easy ride.

“Thousands of man hours have gone into this,” he added. “It’s not just about flowers, it’s about the way the whole resort looks.

“This has put Cleethorpes on the world map – we have visitors from all over the world.

“We want to be able to show the judges what makes Cleethorpes great”.

The town was being judged on an impressive 15 different things.

The main categories are horticulture, environment and community.

Britain In Bloom judge Darren Share said: “We are looking for several things, including community participation, general cleanliness and flowers.

“We’re not just looking for flowers, we’re looking for the whole package.”

While on board the open top bus, Darren added: “It’s lovely to meet people who are enthusiastic.

“It’s great to be here, everybody seems really proud of what they have achieved.

“I have been looking forward to seeing what Cleethorpes has on offer.”

This is the first of two weeks of judging for the national competition, which has seen Cleethorpes whittled down to the final 72.

Cleethorpes is up against other coastal towns such as Great Yarmouth.

Darren also said that the standard so far this year has been especially high.

“In Bloom is a great way for a community to get together and improve their area,” he added.

Judge Rae Beckwith said: “Everything’s important.

“We will be looking at everything from community groups to schools.

“We’re always looking for colour at a coastal town.

“We like to see a safe area where people can be seen to be enjoying themselves.

“We are looking for people contributing and working together.

“I’m sure we will see a lot of nice things in Cleethorpes today.”

Cleethorpes In Bloom’s Jeff Blanchard also hoped for a successful day.

“The work for In Bloom never stops,” he said.

“The gardens always need to be maintained and the only time it slows down is when the season ends.

“It’s been a really good year.

“One of the East Midlands judges said our hanging baskets were the best he had seen in 30 years of horticulture, so you can’t really do better than that.

“We have to give credit to everyone who works so hard and it’s a real team effort, that’s why we call ourselves team Cleethorpes.

“This is being able to show the judges what Cleethorpes is all about.”

The results will be announced later in the year.


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