THE Observer is running its own Hastings In Bloom competition after the local council decided to cut the contest from its budget.
Each year the town’s green-fingered gardening enthusiasts pit their pots and beds against each other in a bid to be crowned the best in Hastings.
But, despite costing just £2,000 to fund, Hastings Borough Council left gardeners disappointed when it announced it would not be holding the competition this year.
However, as part of our on-going I Heart Hastings campaign, the Observer has decided to step in.
The newspaper is inviting locals to send in photographs of their gardens by emailing email@example.com along with their name, address, daytime telephone number and email address.
Alternatively anyone who fancies trying their luck can send a photograph and the details to Hastings In Bloom, c/o Richard Morris, Hastings Observer, Woods House, Telford Road, St Leonards, TN38 9LZ.
And, if you have a neighbour who you think deserves to win, drop us an email and we will try to get out and take a shot ourselves.
The competition, sponsored by ESK, has four categories for people to enter: Best School, Best Local Business, Best Community Group/Charity and Best Private Home - with gardeners asked to specify which section they are entering on their letter or email.
The closing date is Friday, August 19, and once each category is whittled down to a top three gardens, the Observer’s expert judging panel will visit each site before deciding on the winner.
The Observer will announce the winners in the first edition of September and each one will be given a Hastings In Bloom trophy and a framed certificate.
Editor-in-chief Keith Ridley is hopeful as many Hastings gardeners get involved as possible.
He said: “It was a shame that the council could not find the money to hold the competition because I know it is very popular.
“Just driving round the town you see dozens of lovely gardens - people obviously take a real pride in them and they brighten up the area.
“And charities like the Parchment Trust have amazing plots, as do almost all of the town’s schools.
“We are not just looking for flowers - so if you have an amazing vegetable patch which stocks your garden, make sure you let us know.
“It is certainly going to be fun visiting them all as one of the judges.”
The Observer will also be printing a selection of the entries as and when they arrive, so don’t delay. Send us your entry today.