Welcome to Northumbria in Bloom – Communities Growing Together. Enjoy your tour of our website, and we hope your community will join in the popular Bloom competition and campaigns.
About Northumbria in Bloom
Northumbria in Bloom began in 1964 as one of the founder regions of the national Britain in Bloom competition. The Northumbria region is the area from Berwick in the north to Cleveland in the south and Greenhead in the west.
The purpose of the competition was, and still is, to bring cheer to the country through community gardening.
The judges, all volunteers, come from a variety of horticultural backgrounds. Northumbria in Bloom is a registered charity, administered by a board of trustees.
There are two arms to Northumbria in Bloom. One is the main competition and the other is the Royal Horticultural Society It’s Your Neighbourhood campaign (RHS IYN).
The Northumbria in Bloom Competition and how it works
The annual main competition is called Northumbria in Bloom and all cities, towns and villages in our region are eligible to enter. You will find all the details on the How to Enter pages.
Entries are encouraged to register by the end of November for the following year.
Judging teams (usually two people) arrange to visit the entries in April and July.
The judges are looking at three areas of achievement – Horticultural achievement (50% of the marks), Community participation (25%) and Environmental responsibility (25%).
The results are announced in September at a prestigious Awards Ceremony. Each entry is rewarded with a certificate, and the winner in each of the nine categories receives an engraved glass trophy.
There are Special Awards within the main competition, which the judges will assess on their tour, and certificates and trophies will be awarded for these. You will find details of the categories in the Special Awards page.
Each entry receives a full and constructive written report after the results are announced to help them see where their achievements lie and what might be helpful for future developments.
RHS It’s Your Neighbourhood Campaign
‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ (IYN) is open to groups throughout the Region, not just those in areas which enter the main Northumbria in Bloom (NiB) competition. Its attraction for these groups is that it is free to enter and non-competitive. The campaign is aimed at smaller, volunteer-led community groups or individuals who are greening up their local area. It could be a group of residents improving their street, a conservation group, youth groups clearing an area and planting bulbs, a church congregation improving the churchyard, neighbours transforming a neglected corner, and so on.
The three areas of achievement which the assessors look at are Community Participation (40%), Environmental Responsibility (30%) and Gardening Achievement (30%)
The five levels of achievement are:
Level 1 Establishing 0-35 points
Level 2 Improving 36-52
Level 3 Developing 53-68
Level 4 Thriving 69-85
Level 5 Outstanding 86-100
The awards are presented at a ceremony in the autumn where each entrant will receive a framed Royal Horticultural Society certificate along with their assessment report.
This is a friendly campaign, and its popularity is growing as more and more people and community groups realise what they can do to make their area as attractive and well cared for as possible. Have a look at the It’s Your Neighbourhood pages on this site and find out how easy it is to join in.
– Eileen Burn, Chairman, Northumbria in Bloom.