The Bloom judges call in         

  July 2008                                                                                                                                     NANTWICH IN BLOOM PAGE

A VISIT by the North West in Bloom judges is featured in this report by Alderman Doug Butterill (Chairman) to the Nantwich in Bloom Committee













North West in Bloom judges at Weaver School. Pictured (left to right) are: Gill Price, Head Teacher; Brendan Cook, Judge; and Bill Blackledge, Judge and Chairman of Northwest in Bloom, together with pupils who "stole the judges' hearts".

Picture: Doug Butterill


ONCE again, my thanks to all members and friends who've turned out planting, dead heading, weeding and litter picking.

   The raised bed in the town centre (see below), based on a design by Kate MacKennan, is now starting to look great, and was a suitable finale to the visit of the North West in Bloom judges (see above). The new cast iron planters in Church Walk look good.

   There has lately been small cases of petty theft of plants from our town centre planters and some vandalism to the window box at St Mary's Parish Church office.  Fortunately we have some spare plants to fill the gaps.

   The large planter in front of EWM (Edinburgh Wollens Mill (High Street), planted by Minshull's Nursery, seems to get quite a bit of petty vandalism.

   I suppose in this day and age we can say we are quite lucky it isn't a lot worse!


I ACCOMPANIED Tom Deans (North West in Bloom judge) judging the front garden competition. It is always a pleasure to hear Tom eulogising about various plants. He really knows his plants and is, of course, scrupulously fair.

   I think the North West in Bloom judges were suitably impressed with what Nantwich has to offer. 

   Richmond Village always looks good and I know we are all grateful to Sue Hughes and Johnathan for all their help.

   The permanent planting at Elim Bible College is a delight and the maintenance of the planting in Princes Court is immaculate

   The sensory garden at Cheyne Hall is still looking good and the nesting duck at the brine baths caused amusement.

   The input from Caroline and Emma about street cleansing and recycling was appreciated, as was


James Thompson) talking about the conservation work on the Riverside.

   Weaver School, as expected, stole the judges' hearts. 

   The reception and floral display at the Museum set the tone for the town walk and as did the Cocoa Yard.

   The new planters and planting in front of the church were looking good as was the market hall.

    In Pillory Street, the input from the commercial sector was appreciated as it was in High Street, Swine Market and Mill Street.


ON Wednesday next I am meeting Claire Scaife from "Visit Chester and Cheshire" who are bringing RHS personnel to visit Nantwich on September 23.



A FLOWER bed representing the Great Fire of Nantwich (1583) has been unveiled in Nantwich Square.

   It is based on a design by local artist Kate McKinnon and the flowers were all donated by Stapeley Water Gardens. The flowers were planted by Nantwich in Bloom Volunteers.

   The flower bed - one of a number of projects in and around the centre of Nantwich to have been undertaken by the Nantwich in Bloom Committee - commemorates Cheshire's Year of the Garden '08.


Right: The "Great Fire" bed in Bloom in The Square. Shortly after the bed was planted, it was vandalised.      Picture: Doug Butterill



In among the blooms, Doug Butterill carries out some dead-heading ready for the unveiling.










The plaque on the flower bed is uncovered at a small ceremony to unveil the flower bed.

   Left to right are: Connie Jones (Nantwich in Bloom Committee Secretary), Charmagne Jones (a Nantwich in Bloom Volunteer), Helen Gatensbury (Stapeley Water Gardens) Kate McKinnon (artist) and Doug Butterill (Chairman, Nantwich in Bloom Committee).


Kate has designs on town centre flower bed

BORN in Nantwich, Kate did a degree in Fine Art at Manchester College of Art before going on to teach at the South Cheshire College and at the NNEB (Nursery Nurses Education Board)South Cheshire College and at the NNEB College in Brighton.

   The college teaches nursery nurses and Kate taught “the art part”.

   She later became Assistant Director of an art centre in Cardiff for three years and then had her children.


   Since then she has taken posts in schools and colleges.

   Kate has a Masters degree in dyslexia, enabling her to teach dyslexic children, and is a trained aromatherapist and reflexologist.

   For the flower bed, Kate suggested various colours for the blooms, discussing what would impact together, what would go on blooming and what would come out at the same time. 

   A Fine Artist for 30 years, she now sells her work through Peter Wilson Fine Art Auctioneers and other places.


HER last sale was in February, since when she has done an art residency, taken part in Audlem Arts Festival, done a piece for the Gay Pride exhibition in Manchester, raised funds for a village in Kenya, and taken part in exhibitions in Nantwich, Warrington and Chester.  








There is just no easy way to dead-head the blooms. Kate McKinnon gets in among the flowers

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