Ulster in Bloom 2018: Whitehead takes rail halt title

The competition encourages civic pride (archive image).
The competition encourages civic pride (archive image).

Whitehead has taken the Community Rail Halt title in the 2018 Translink Ulster in Bloom competition.

Brighter Whitehead Group’s efforts at the seaside town’s railway station were recognised as winners and runners-up were announced at a ceremony in Ballyscullion Park, Magherafelt.

The 40th anniversary year of the competition, which boosts civic pride by officially recognising beautiful plant and floral displays, attracted 121 entries representing all council areas as well as 31 bus and train stations.

There were near misses too for east Antrim with Larne second in the Town category and Carrickfergus joint third with Omagh in the Large Town class. Meanwhile, Whitehead and Glenarm were third in the Small Town and Village sections respectively with Ballynure similarly placed in the Small Village contest.

Translink Chairman Frank Hewitt, said: “This milestone year of Translink Ulster in Bloom has produced many exquisite entries and I’d like to congratulate all the 2018 winners and runners-up! It’s been another highly competitive competition and we continue to see a trend for new locations hitting the top spots. Our thanks to all the local councils, businesses, community groups and Translink employees who work hard to make Northern Ireland a more attractive place to live, work and visit.

Alderman Freda Donnelly, vice president of the Northern Ireland Local Government Association, said: “As Vice President of NILGA, it is my pleasure to convey the Association’s admiration and encouragement to each of you today. Not just for your support in this the 40th year, but for your many years of championing the “In Bloom” message of councils, local committees, residents and businesses, coming together to take pride in the places where you live and work, creating a better environment for everyone to share.”

The 2018 Translink Ulster in Bloom Competition category winners are: City – Derry City (Derry City & Strabane DC), Large Town – Lisburn (Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council), Town – Antrim (Antrim & Newtownabbey Borough Council), Small Town – Randalstown (Antrim and Newtownabbey BC), Large Village – Cullybackey (Mid & East Antrim BC), Village – Donaghmore (Mid Ulster District Council) and Small Village – Charlestown Village (Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon BC).

The ‘Most Improved’ titles went to Ballymoney and Dungiven (both Causeway Coast & Glens BC) and the ‘Roses in Towns’ award winner is Lisburn (Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council).

Special Award winners are: Cullybackey (Mid & East Antrim BC) – Biodiversity Award, Antrim (Antrim & Newtownabbey BC) – Biodiversity Award, Walsh’s Hotel in Maghera (Mid Ulster District Council – Outstanding Floral Presentation, the Suffragette Floral Display in Castlecaulfield (Mid Ulster District Council) – Outstanding Floral Presentation, O’Kanes bar in Randalstown (Antrim & Newtownabbey BC) – Outstanding Floral Presentation and The Errigle Inn in Belfast (Belfast City Council) – Outstanding Floral Presentation.