Community’s green-fingered effort pays off

Lord Mayor of Belfast,Gavin Robinson, Angela Coffey (NITHC/Translink), Councillor Freda Donnelly (NILGA) and Larne Borough Council's Chris Hogg and Jim King celebrate Glenarm's success at the recent Translink Ulster in Bloom Awards. INLT 38-606-CON Picture Brian Thompson/Presseye.com
Lord Mayor of Belfast,Gavin Robinson, Angela Coffey (NITHC/Translink), Councillor Freda Donnelly (NILGA) and Larne Borough Council's Chris Hogg and Jim King celebrate Glenarm's success at the recent Translink Ulster in Bloom Awards. INLT 38-606-CON Picture Brian Thompson/Presseye.com

Countless hours of hard work and dedication has paid off for the volunteers of Glenarm Village Improvement Committee with the announcement that they have been awarded first place in large village category of the prestigious Ulster In Bloom Competition, sponsored by Translink.

The project commenced last autumn when daffodils were planted to brighten up the entrance of the village for the spring. This project was initially to involve the children from Seaview Primary School and the Glenarm Pre-school Playgroup with the help of Inver Garden Centre but due to the amount of bulbs, the whole village rallied round to plant.

From this event the Village Improvement Committee was formed and it was decided to give a facelift to the village and plant a few flowers, herbs and vegetables around the marina area to provide a welcome to visitors.

This involved an appeal for donations, old tins of paint and other materials to carry out the work. This idea soon escalated to a complete village makeover with the suggestion that Glenarm should be entered into the Ulster in Bloom competition. Those that may not have been able to go out and help dig and plant around the village have placed window boxes and planters out and in some cases even painted their own properties.

Councillor Maureen Morrow said: “I am particularly impressed with the community spirit in the village and how the competition really got everyone rallying round”.

Villagers have been patiently waiting since the July judging for the results and there was a great sense of pride and delight on hearing the announcement.

“It is brilliant news,” commented Cllr Morrow. “A well-deserved win for the community who have worked so tirelessly to improve the village for both visitors and residents. The result is a credit to everyone who gave of their time and also to the local churches and businesses who very kindly provided sponsorship for the project.

“Special thanks goes to the members of the Improvements Committee for their dedication, foresight and hard work and also to Jim King and the parks staff at Larne Borough Council who provided advice and support throughout this project. I think that Glenarm is one of the most beautiful villages on the Antrim Coast and is well worth a visit” she added.

Speaking at the results announcement ceremony at Belfast Castle, Angela Coffey, board member, NITHC/Translink, said: “I’d like to congratulate all those involved in Glenarm’s beautiful arrangements for their success, especially as the standard of entries in this year’s competition was exceptionally high. We hope such impressive displays will encourage even more people to get involved in Ulster in Bloom next year and to visit our towns, cities and villages to enjoy the beautiful flowers and plants on show.

“We launched this year’s competition by calling on local gardeners to plant more pollinator flowers as part of our Translink ‘Go Eco’ drive and partnership with Business in the Community to champion Biodiversity. We were pleased to see that many of this year’s participants embraced this initiative and are helping support insect life and biodiversity throughout Northern Ireland,” said Angela.