Pictures show beautiful Derbyshire village set to compete for Britain in Bloom 2024 title

Green-fingered residents are preparing their village for the prestigious Britain in Bloom competition.

Milford will be judged alongside seven other locations in the village category of the annual nationwide gardening competition.

Judges from The East Midlands in Bloom competition submitted Milford into the national competition after they awarded volunteers a gold award in 2023.

David Moreton, chair of Blooming Milford, said: "I think the judges were impressed by the Milford Community Greenspace, three overgrown allotments which have been transformed by parents of children at Milford Primary School into a lovely playing and learning area for the children (they only had a tarmac playground before.)

"The judges also liked Blooming Milford's community gardens and orchards along the riverside in Hopping Mill Meadow and the private front gardens along Millers Way.”

Set up in 2008, Blooming Milford is a volunteer group of residents who strive to make Milford a better place through gardening related activities.

The first major project of the group, in 2009, was to plant 3500 daffodil bulbs in the verge by the Strutt Arms on the A6, which now give a spectacular annual display. The group has since then planted daffodils, crocuses and anemones in the verges by the Strutt Arms bus stop, on Vicarage Road and on Wood Lane, daffodils and snowdrops in the Children’s Play Area on the A6, and daffodils, wild daffodils, snowdrops, and bluebells near the riverside path in Hopping Mill Meadow.

Projects have included the renovation of The Triangle, the garden area owned by Belper Town Council on the junction of the A6 and Chevin Road, setting up of the Spring and Autumn Garden in Hopping Mill Meadow and installing planters around the village.

The group has been keen to provide the community with herbs and fruit that are free for them to take and use. There are now 43 community fruit trees around the village thanks to Blooming Milford.

Blooming Milford has entered Milford into the East Midlands in Bloom best kept village competition in 2011, 2013, 2021, 2022 and 2023.

In 2011 the village won a silver award, in 2013 and 2022 a silver gilt award, and in 2021 and 2023 the highest award given by the EMiB judges, gold.

This year Blooming Milford will restarting the Milford and Makeney Flower and Produce show in September, after a gap of nearly 30 years.

The village will be judged by the East Midlands in Bloom team in the first two weeks of July for their competition.

The Britain in Bloom inspection will follow in the first two weeks of August and volunteers will need to create a portfolio highlighting parts of the village the judges will not be able to see on their visit.

More than 20 volunteers are involved in getting the village ready for judges.

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