Halstead hopes to keep top title

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Latest news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

Halstead is pulling out all the stops to defend its top position as overall winner of the Anglia in Bloom competition.

Halstead in Bloom – which has been responsible for florally decorating the town for the last 14 years – is putting the finishing touches to its displays.

Last year, the town was awarded the gold standard, best town, best overall entry and named as the winner of the Anglia in Bloom trophy.

Anglia in Bloom judges return on Thursday, July 24 – and the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) Britain in Bloom judges will be out judging on Monday, July 28.

Halstead in Bloom secretary Julia Smith said around 200 volunteers help to keep the town looking good.

“We started in 2000 by holding a public meeting and 40 people came along from which we were able to create a core committee of 12 people,” she said.

“Over the years, it has just grown and grown because people can see the benefits to the town and they want it to look good.”

Five years ago, the group – which has its own website at www.halsteadinbloom.org.uk and its own Faceboook page – set up an irrigation system at the bottom of the town in order to water the hanging baskets and tubs around the bridge, down The Causeway and along by the Solar Superstone in Weavers Court using water from the river.

To mark Britain in Bloom’s 50th anniversary this year, Halstead will stage a River of Gold floral display, using all gold and yellow flowers across the bridge.