Oakham In Bloom volunteers have had a wonderful week raising money for their year-round projects and would like to thank all who have taken part and contributed to their festive fundraising events.
A Christmas Window Display competition was a new special event this year, with almost 30 local businesses taking part. The window displays were judged by Mayor of Oakham, Councillor Jayne Woodcock – first place was Fords of Oakham’s display of toys and treats for all the family, second place went to Langrick & Coe Opticians for their Santa’s Specs display, and third place was awarded to Abigail’s Vintage Bridal with an elegant window display featuring Edwardian wedding dresses.
Competition organiser Pippy Woodley said “I am so proud of all our local shops, the festive windows look amazing and I’d like to thank all who took part in the competition.” The competition raised £260 which is to be split between Oakham In Bloom and Rutland Rotary Club.
In addition to the window displays, Oakham In Bloom created their own seasonal display – a Christmas Tree remembering the WW1 soldiers from Oakham. The tree, decorated with red baubles and featuring the names of every soldier who did not return home, was part of the Congregational Church’s Christmas Tree Festival in aid of WaterAid and was awarded second place.
Late Night Shopping is always a date in Oakham In Bloom’s diary and this year the volunteers returned to the Victoria Hall with their annual tombola and raffle with the John Lewis Mabel the Penguin toy as top prize – won by Mrs Kennedy of Cottesmore. Volunteer Marilyn Morten said “We had a wonderful evening and raised over £350 from the raffle and tombola – we’d like to thank our supporters for the many donations of prizes, and thanks also to those who visited the stall.”
And the fundraising doesn’t stop now… a great gift or treat for yourself this Christmas is a subscription to Oakham In Bloom’s lottery! Just £12 a year gives an entry into the draw with a chance to win £30, £20 or £15 each month. All proceeds from the lottery go towards Oakham In Bloom’s projects. Contact Angie Humphreys on 01572 756120 for further information or look for our leaflet in the Victoria Hall or Oakham Library.
Entrants in the Christmas Window Display Competition were:
Wildwood Kitchen – High Street
Hungry Birds – Burley Road
Shangri-La – Market Street
Everlasting Now – Church Street
Duo Boutique – High Street
Ellique Beauty – South Street
Tonnerre – Catmose Street
GiftBox – Church Street
Age UK – Burley Road/High Street
Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors – Mill Street
Pollen – High Street
Spirit of the Andes – Mill Street
Cancer Research UK – Market Place
Baubles & Bangles – New Street, just off High Street
Pearce & Sons Jeweller – High Street
LOROS – High Street
Langrick & Coe Opticians – High Street
Albar’s Den, The Gift Emporium – High Street
Portess of Oakham Ltd – High Street
Colemans – High Street
Sally Holmes Florist – Melton Road, top of Dean’s Street
Itch Gallery – Mill Street
Clifton’s Tea Room – Mill Street
Altered Images – Mill Street
Fords of Oakham – Church Street
Impact – Market Place/High Street
Furleys – Market Place/High Street
Abigail’s Vintage Bridal – Cold Overton Road
Melton Mowbray Building Society – High Street
Thursday 12 July is judging day for Oakham in the East Midlands In Bloom competition!
Oakham In Bloom volunteers will host the East Midlands In Bloom judges, giving them a guided tour of our town.
There’s a lot to fit in to a few hours, and the Oakham In Bloom team have carefully organised a route to fit in as much as possible, including time for the judges to meet children at Catmose Primary School, Scouts at All Saints Church, the Town Clerk and volunteers along the route.
So get your gardens ready!! The judges look at all aspects of the town, from floral displays in the centre of town and gardens in residential areas to environmental projects involving the community – it truly is an event for everyone in town.
The route will include:
Oakham Castle, Market Street and Market Place
Church Passage and All Saints Church
Cutts Close and The Bandstand (the park)
Burley Road Allotments
The Whipper-In Garden
Rutland County Council Grounds and Arboretum
Oakham Library – Sensory Garden, Prairie Garden, the Peacock & volunteers’ flowerbeds
Rutland County Museum Courtyard Garden
The Bypass & Roundabouts
Cold Overton Road
Lands End Way
Melton Road and the Level Crossing
The Oakham In Bloom volunteers will add an extra session to their normal gardening sessions on Wednesday 11 July, starting at 6pm from Oakham Library – this will be a last minute check for weeds and litter and everyone is welcome to join us.
After such a fantastic achievement for Oakham at the East Midlands In Bloom ceremony, the Oakham In Bloom volunteers and supporters were back to work to tidy and clear beds and containers to prepare them for winter bedding and spring bulbs.
Volunteers have been out and about every week and included support this year from Oakham School and Catmose College students. Teresa Thompson, Oakham In Bloom’s Gardening Co-ordinator was delighted with the efforts of the students “They all worked so hard and so quickly that we had to find other areas for them to work on!”.
The students not only worked on the library beds, but moved on to the Bandstand too, which the Oakham School students were particularly proud of as they talked of how they would see the bulbs coming to life as they pass the area most days.
At the library the volunteers were helped by Vale Contract Services, who work closely with Oakham In Bloom as part of their service to maintain the area and other sections of the town. Vale’s work was acknowledged by the East Midlands in Bloom judges who commented on “high levels of cleanliness throughout”.
The Vale team were very proud of such comments, Paul Dolman, Operations Manager, commented: “It is a real boost to the team when our work is acknowledged by an organisation such as East Midlands In Bloom. We enjoy working with the Oakham In Bloom team who have a real enthusiasm which spur us on and make us feel part of the community’s efforts.”
The Cory Environmental Trust have also been thanked for their contribution in the form of a grant which contributed hugely to the creation of the Prairie Garden at the Library. The feature was awarded ‘Best New Permanent Landscape’ by the East Midlands In Bloom judges.
The Baptist Church volunteers also took part in clearing the beds and planting spring bulbs on Melton Road. Oakham In Bloom are most grateful for their support in this area which receives much praise from Oakham residents.
And that’s not it for the year! There are many more maintenance parties and fundraising events planned throughout autumn and winter – the Oakham In Bloom volunteers and supporters know that the great achievements of East Midlands In Bloom and Britain In Bloom only come from year-round hard work!