Devizes in Bloom
Making our town an attractive environment for all to enjoy is something that the Town Council takes great pride in, and our commitment to ‘In Bloom’ at local level is part of our drive to improve our space.
We hope that you have heard about Devizes In Bloom, either through the local competitions or through the Open Gardens weekend for charity. You will have seen the wonderful floral displays around the town and outside many of our businesses and wondered who was responsible for them.
The hanging baskets outside many of the businesses are paid for by the business owners and generally made to order and then tended and watered through a contractual agreement. Some business owners make their own, which is brilliant as they add a touch of individuality. Others have a bit of land to beautify and do it all themselves.
The large blue containers belonging to Devizes Town Council that are dotted about, the roundabout by The Green, the various troughs and beds, and all containers and baskets on council-owned buildings are planted and tended to by the brilliant Parks and Open Spaces team, based at Hillworth Park.
Behind the scenes, the Devizes In Bloom Committee, made up of volunteers from the community, is supported by administrative staff from the Town Council.
So what do the Devizes Committee actually DO? Here’s a taster: they whip up enthusiasm in businesses and residents alike to beautify the town with displays for our In Bloom competition which they then judge; they mentor and help our ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ community groups, our School Gardening Clubs and anyone else who needs a hand; they support Family events at Hillworth Park such as Plant in the Park in spring. They also organise the bi-annual Open Gardens weekend for the Mayor’s charities. Each year there is a Presentation Evening to celebrate the past year’s achievements. Their newest initiative has been the formation of a Clean Up Devizes Squad (CUDS) of volunteers who go out litter-picking, hacking and slashing. and turning boring roundabouts into things of beauty, sown with wildflower seeds and planted with bulbs. We started with 8 people two years ago and are now up to 30!
But the In Bloom Committee need help! The numbers have depleted owing to personal circumstances so they are asking you to consider whether you would like to get involved. The committee meets about once every six weeks at the Town Hall on a Tuesday or a Wednesday morning, usually for a couple of hours, where they thrash over ideas – new and old – and look to take Devizes In Bloom forward over a cup of coffee and biscuits.
You may be thinking that you’re not the committee-type. Most of them aren’t! If you think you would be interested in becoming more involved with the In Bloom team, and let’s face it – why wouldn’t you – then please give Elanor Oddy or Laura Davies a call on 01380 722160 or email the Town Hall and you’ll be invited along to one of our meetings. Alternatively, Elanor or Laura will put you in touch with the Chair, Zena, and you can have an informal chat if you would prefer.
We do hope that you enjoy the fruits of all our labours and that Devizes is a town that you will enjoy and come back to.
A POEM BY JENNIE BROWN