Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Beer could put froth on new bid for bloom gold

A BEER could be produced to mark’s Henley’s second attempt to win gold in the national final of Britain in

A BEER could be produced to mark’s Henley’s second attempt to win gold in the national final of Britain in Bloom.

The town won silver gilt in this year’s competition — just two points short of gold — but has been chosen to represent the Thames Valley and Chilterns region again next year.

Kellie Hinton, who chairs Henley in Bloom, hopes one of the local breweries will want to create a special bloom brew.

She says: “One of the Brakspear beers last year was called Henley Gold and because we won gold in the regional competition it seemed to go quite well.

“It is something quite achievable and if one of the breweries is open to it, we’d love to go for it. Perhaps some of the proceeds could come to the group.”

The overall theme for the 2014 Royal Horticultural Society competition is celebrating the 50th anniversary of Britain in Bloom while the regional theme is conservation and sustainability. Kellie and her colleagues are already thinking of ideas, including a “vertical garden”, planting flowerbeds at AFC Henley and Henley Hockey Club and decorating the old telephone box in St Andrew’s Road.

She says: “The vertical garden would be on the wall of the Leichlingen Pavilion overlooking Mill Meadows where it would be seen rather than being tucked away on a building in the town.

“It would be very pretty to look at and very green as well as cost effective.”

The idea of planting up the call box was inspired by people in Sonning Common who did it with an old kiosk bought from BT.

Kelly says: “Sonning Common filled theirs with flowers and we have seen online some places where a phone box was used as a library, so there are lots of different ideas.

“We would like to reach out to the community with some sort of project and see what people want to do with it.”

The flowers at the sports clubs could be planted to depict a football player and hockey player in the teams’ colours.

Kellie also hopes there will be a repeat of the Henley Standard’s Buy a Basket campaign which led to a record 163 baskets being purchased this year.

“The campaign really boosted our basket sales,” she says. “We have already had a few people say they would like to do it again and saying they don’t live in the town but would really like to sponsor a basket.

“One person paid for half a basket last year and would like to pay for a whole one this year.

“The campaign really helped and it would be really nice to have even more baskets next year.”

As for Henley’s chances in the competiton, she is “quite hopeful”.

“I think we are already in a good place and anything we do to build on that it is a positive,” she says. “If we all keep up what we have been doing and don’t try to get too big, we can only improve.”

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