Heart of England in Bloom 2014

Haughton in Bloom - our third campaign and our third Silver-Gilt Award



If you would like more information about golden insect-friendly plants visit the RHS’s website at:


http://www.rhs.org.uk/Gardening/Community-gardening/Britain-in-Bloom/Britain-in-Bloom-launch  (historic information - link inactive)

This year’s RHS theme for Britain in Bloom is ‘Growing for Gold’, with an emphasis on yellow plants which are attractive to pollinators.  These pictures, from August 2013, show that yellow plants for pollinators are never too far from our hearts ... including a humble dandelion found on the Greenway, which appeals to bee and butterfly.

Bloom is a year-round initiative.  A January challenge to our young people is to design a poster to encourage people to clean up after their dog.  Our anti-dog-fouling posters designed by children previously have succumbed to the weather and we need some new ones.  Our competition is open to children and young people under 18.  


Dog-fouling Awareness Poster Competition  

Back to Haughton in Bloom page

Our Heart of England in Bloom and Best Kept Village campaigns are closely linked with many shared aims and initiatives.


 Newsletters and posters are shared and there are links to them from this page and from the 2014 Best Kept Village page.


 Enter via the BKV Trophy Pole to visit this year’s BKV page.

BKV 2014



Haughton in Bloom and

Haughton 2014

(Best Kept Village Competition) Newsletters as they appeared each month










A Calendar of Haughton in Bloom


Click on the links below to see images of Haughton in Bloom throughout the months and seasons

Haughton in Bloom in August

Haughton in Bloom in September

Haughton in Bloom in October

Haughton In Bloom in November

Haughton In Bloom in December

Haughton in Bloom in January

Haughton in Bloom in February

Haughton in Bloom in March (Part 1)  March (Part 2)

Haughton in Bloom in April (Part 1)  April (Part 2)

Haughton in Bloom in May (Part 1) May (Part 2)

Haughton in Bloom in June (Part 1) June (Part 2)

Haughton in Bloom in July (Part 1) July (Part 2)

The Launch Meeting for Haughton’s entries into Heart of England in Bloom and the Best Kept Village Competition will be held at

Haughton Village Hall on Friday 7th March at 7.30pm


All welcome


Launch Meeting Poster

Grassy Lane Improvements


We are aiming to improve the Grassy Lane by making it accessible in all weathers.  The work began in July and August 2013, with the strimming of the grass and the cutting of the hedge.  In December 2013 a metre-wide path of shale was laid.  The next stage, as part of the area’s restoration, is clearance work to tidy the trees that overhang or have sunk into the brook and to tidy the banks and hedges on the playing field side.

July 17th 2013 - a bit of a jungle.  Somewhere beneath the nettles is a path.

The same view - July 17th and December 14th - before and after the new surface was laid.

November 26th - the path is visible, but there is plenty of mud to negotiate.

Grassy Lane/Brook Clearance


Volunteers are invited to join a working party to improve the recently-resurfaced Grassy Lane footpath and surrounding area


Meet at the Brazenhill Lane/Playing Field car park end of the lane at


1.30pm on Tuesday 4th March


Bring your own wellies, loppers and clippers


Wheelbarrows welcome

These two new bird boxes were installed in trees at the Village Hall on February 28th.  

News of the Grassy Lane clearance event held on Tuesday 4th March can be found in Haughton in Bloom in March or by visiting the BKV 2014 page

The Launch Meeting for Haughton in Bloom (Heart of England in Bloom) and Haughton 2014 (Best Kept Village Competition) was held in the Village Hall on Friday 7th March.  Information-sharing, the noting of themes, initiatives and key-dates took place, before the evening concluded with discussions and refreshments.


Our campaigns are now officially underway!

Grassy Lane and Brook Clearance Event


Thursday 13th March - 1.30pm - Playing Field car park


Bring your own wellies, loppers and clippers


Wheelbarrows welcome

For an early-spring update on the Grassy Lane, visit the BKV 2014 page or see Haughton in Bloom in March.

Tidy-up work has taken place in the churchyard ecology area, with the removal for composting of the leaves which have been protecting small plants over the winter.  Many beautiful plants have made an appearance in the spring sunshine.

In another part of the churchyard a bed is being dug and prepared for the planting of roses.  This will bring more colour to the churchyard and pleasure to people passing by on the east path and on the nearby pavement and main road.

The children’s Dog-fouling Poster Competition brought in a massive total of 150 posters.  Many thanks to Haughton St Giles School for its support in this initiative.  Judging has taken place and winners will be announced shortly.  Winning posters and selected others will be displayed around the village from May onwards.   

Many of our initiatives are shared with the Best Kept Village Competition entry.  Much of our publicity information, including dates and times, is produced in the monthly newsletters and in posters.



Garden Competition




Civic Amenity Visits



The hard surface to the pedestrian gate in Grassy Lane was completed in early April.  Heavy rain followed and the brook swelled rapidly.  The brook bank is green with nettles and cow parsley.  Lesser celandines can be found in several places.  Sycamore leaves are opening and blackthorn is in flower.   Amongst birds seen are chaffinches, great tits, long-tailed tits, goldcrests, robins and blackbirds.

Our first Tidy-up of the new season was held on Thursday 17th April.  The Village Hall surrounds and the shops’ area were given a dust and brush up and Newport Road and the Grassy Lane were scoured for litter.  The pictures below show some of the volunteers busily working at the Village Hall.

There is always a lot of work to be done on the greens.  Dead-heading flowers, mowing, cutting of the edges of the greens and sweeping up has to be undertaken regularly.

Wildflower seed sowing


We will be sowing wildflower seeds in the small copse at the east end of the playing field at 6.10pm on Wednesday 30th April (before the Tidy-up).  Everyone is welcome to join in this event.  No tools are necessary, but because the area contains nettles, strong clothing and footwear is recommended.

These two volunteers are sowing seeds in prepared bare patches amongst the nettles in the copse.  It was a dry evening, (just right for the Tidy-up which followed this event), but overnight rain was expected, and this would help the seeds to prosper.

Grassy Lane Improvements


New planting has taken place at the Grassy Lane with the addition of 20 hawthorn trees, donated by Stafford Borough Council’s Street Scene.

The trees are being used to fill the gaps in the hedge and have been placed below where they will be planted.

This tree was planted at the top of the bank.

The new trees were watered in with water collected from the brook in a bucket.

The work involved coping with difficult situations.

Dog-fouling Awareness Competition


The children’s posters have been judged and a selection of winning and Highly Commended posters have been put on display around the village.  150 posters were entered, with the young people of Haughton St Giles School excelling themselves in support of this initiative.  Shown below are the top three entries in the 8 and under age group.  Winners in the 9-13 age group can be found on the 2014 Best Kept Village page.

Winner - 8 and under - Phoebe

Second - 8 and under - Beatrice

Third - 8 and under - Erin

As part of regular Tidy-ups volunteers help with weeding the beds.  

Newport Road beds are cleared ready for the summer show of colour.  Will it be gold?

The same bed, a week later, ready for its summer planting.

The Sunday School has produced a promise of spectacular gold to come in these new pots.

The tractor tyres have been planted with fresh new seasonal bedding.

The pupils of Haughton St Giles School have been learning about the wildlife in the area.  They have been assisted by staff members from Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, who have visited the school and helped the children create habitats for birds and invertebrates, including bird boxes, and a bug hotel made from pallets.  The older pupils have studied birds that can be seen in and around the school grounds, and are making identification leaflets for younger children to use.

The winners of the Dog-fouling Awareness Competition have been presented with their prizes.  

To see a picture of this event visit the BKV 2014 page.

Two water butts have been installed at the Village Hall for use in watering the Hall’s hanging baskets, the poppy trough and nearby beds.  The butts have been donated by the Village Hall to help in the Haughton in Bloom and Best Kept Village campaigns.

Newport Road beds have been planted in perfect conditions for growth - warmth and rain.

This latest addition to Newport Road Green is seen here gleaming with white undercoat.

The planting of the Newport Road beds is completed, with these, on the corner of Meadow Drive.

This new memorial bench near the War Memorial honours Horace Wilshaw, fundraiser for the annual senior citizens’ trip to the seaside which is named after him.  Pictured here, left to right, with a tribute of bike and flat cap, are the three trustees of ‘Horace’s Outing’, Peter Rowley, Derek Warbrick and Roger Williamson.

Dead-heading the WI golden rose on the Tidy-up of 6th June.

Heart of England in Bloom Judging 2014


Haughton in Bloom

will be judged on the morning of

Wednesday 2nd July


Heart of England in Bloom Judging Event Poster

This hole from garden into churchyard is a special route for one of our village hedgehogs.

Even though the weather has been dry for a long time, there is still enough collected rain water to give these Newport Road bedding plants a welcome drink.

Heart of England in Bloom Judging


On Wednesday 2nd June, our two Heart of England judges, Chris Blythe and Robin Russell spent the morning in the parish making their judgements on Haughton in Bloom.  The weather was sunny and the village was looking at its best for the visit.  Because of the early date, some of the flowers were not yet showing their colours, so some of the gold which will be in evidence over the next few weeks was still in bud.  The judges attended a presentation at the Village Hall, where they saw a calendar of work undertaken in the past year and met some of the many people who came to give support.  They were then taken on a tour of key areas, including the Village Hall, churchyard, school, flower beds, pubs, gardens and Grassy Lane.  We now have to wait until September to know the judges’ decision and see their comments.   They will highlight Areas of Achievement and also Areas for Improvement.

Mrs Tracey Cook (right), Headteacher of Haughton St Giles School, shows the Heart of England in Bloom judges, Robin Russell (left) and Chris Blythe (centre) the children’s vegetable plot planters in the school grounds.

The Best Kept Garden Awards Evening


will be held on Friday 8th August at 7.30pm at the Village Hall


Awards Evening Poster

The judging visit has come and gone, but Haughton’s flowerbeds, planters, baskets, borders and gardens continue to bloom - and bloom and bloom and bloom.  Gold has popped up all over and the fine weather has helped the flowers to shine.

The ash tree bed on Newport Road shows many different varieties of bee-friendly yellow plants.

This Sunday School sunflower has reached the roof of the porch and has attracted at least one bee!

For more golden images,  see


Haughton in Bloom in July Part 2

The Best Kept Garden and Hanging Baskets Competition Awards were presented at Haughton Village Hall on Friday 8th August.  


Garden Competition Results

The 2014 Result




Representatives from Haughton in Bloom attended the Heart of England in Bloom presentation event held at Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury on Thursday 11th September.   Once again, Haughton was awarded Silver-Gilt.  In addition, the two village pubs, the Bell Inn and the Shropshire Inn who had entered the Hotel and Pub Grounds section, also each received Silver-Gilt Awards.  Mr Roger Barker, Chairman of Haughton Garden Guild accepted the awards on behalf of the pubs and Cllr Derek Warbrick collected the parish’s award.

Pictured outside Theatre Severn with the three Silver-Gilt Awards are Mr Roger Barker, Mrs Ann Barker and Councillor Derek Warbrick.