Students’ Union Landscaping and Gardening Society wins RHS award

Loughborough Students’ Union Landscaping and Gardening Society has been awarded a 2014 It’s Your Neighbourhood Award by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and Britain in Bloom.

They received Level 5 ‘Outstanding’, the highest possible level of achievement, gaining 89 marks out of 100.

It’s Your Neighbourhood is a grassroots community gardening campaign helping people to make lasting improvements to their local areas. It supports community groups in cleaning up and greening up their immediate local environment – whether that’s the street they live in, or a small patch of communal land needing a revamp.

The scheme assesses three distinct areas: community participation, environmental responsibility and gardening achievement.

In their report, the RHS assessors who visited the campus in August to see the Landscaping and Gardening Society’s work, highlighted several areas of particular merit:

−      The substantial increase in the Society membership over the last year, drawing new recruits from the local community as well as University’s student and staff bodies.

−      The development of the Fruit Routes initiative, in which the Society is a key partner. This is a one kilometre ‘edible’ pathway throughout the campus comprising 54 varieties of edible fruit, nut trees and 550 native hedgerow plants.

−      Water harvesting from the roof of the Society’s site shed, crop rotation on a new vegetable plot, a new bug hotel and a profusion of around 70 wild flower species, which nestle side by side with ornamental plants.

Of the award, Jaydeep Gandhi from the Students’ Union Landscaping and Gardening Society said: “We’re delighted to have achieved the highest level of commendation under the RHS and Britain in Bloom scheme.”

“We have a very dedicated, and constantly growing, number of volunteers who give up their spare time to help to ensure that the flowers, herbs, vegetables and fruit we have on campus continue to thrive and contribute to the sustainability of the University. I’m pleased that their hard work has been recognised in this way.”

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