50 Entries for the first ever ‘Luton in Bloom’ Gardening Competition was a huge success
and live on Freeview channel 276
Ever since its launch in May, the project has been encouraging communities to grow items, learn life skills and meet new people.
At a recent briefing to Luton’s different faith and community leaders, project manager Shana Iqbal said: “It is also aiming to improve the overall look and feel of the town.”
Shana shared some powerful and moving stories of how some very lonely and isolated people benefitted from this project and felt part of a community in a useful and meaningful way.
The project founder Sujel Miah, who is also a local activist and a key community champion said: “It is about transforming communities through connecting people and plants, especially those from most deprived parts of our town. It is also about supporting people’s physical and mental wellbeing and creating a sense of pride in communities, neighbourhoods and the town. It is about residents contributing to the way their street and neighbourhood looks and feel, through fun and healthy competition.”
Gulie Butcher, Vice Chair of the Luton Council of Faiths was one of the Garden Competition Judges. She said: “It is giving residents an opportunity to learn and explore gardening but more importantly create a sense of pride and ownership in the areas and the town. It is also about connecting with others in our communities around a shared goal.”
Over 50 entries for a gardening competition were submitted in 4 different categories. Loana Frigura won the Best Residential Front Display, Lullington Neighbours won the Best Community Garden, Tahmina Ajmal won the Best Fruit and Veg patch and Woodlands Secondary School Best School Garden.
Cash prizes were awarded to winners and runners-up at the community farmers market held last Sunday in the town centre where many community members could showcase what they had grown. The project has been very much supported by Luton Rising, Community Interest Luton, Inspire FM, The Peace Garden Project, Luton Council of Faiths, and Luton Council. The garden competition, farmers market and gardening workshops will also support the council’s objectives on community development, cohesion, economic skills, public health outcomes and Luton Rising’s improving the environment commitment.