Saturday, 18 January 2020
MORE than 200 hanging baskets have now been put up around Henley to decorate the town for summer.
Staff from WindowFlowers, of Burnham, installed them outside shops, businesses and people’s homes over the weekend and the company will water and look after them until the autumn.
Another 13 baskets have been sold this week, meaning the total is now 220, only 21 off the record of 241, which was set in 2016.
Baskets are still available as part of the annual scheme, which is run by Henley in Bloom and supported by the Henley Standard.
Kellie Hinton, who chairs Henley in Bloom, said it was great to have so many baskets even though the town was not entering any competitions this year.
She said: “The baskets look great and there is already a good amount of colour coming from them. It won’t be long before we see them blooming. We have always said we’d continue to do what we do regardless of competitions but it’s really nice to see people still want to contribute to the attractiveness of the town.”
The Spice Merchant restaurant in Thames Side has five baskets.
Manager Hasan Chowdhury said: “I love the Henley in Bloom hanging baskets, which are always very colourful. Most importantly, they look beautiful but it feels better when you do it together as a community.”
Town councillor Will Hamilton, who has bought a basket for outside his home in Greys Road, said: “The baskets are great. It’s one of the things the town council and WindowFlowers do very well.
“I am not very greenfingered so it works well for me as they do the watering.”
The Bell Bookshop in Bell Street has two baskets as usual.
Manager Hilary Redhead said: “We’ve been doing it for quite a few years now. As an independent shop, you want to support the council with a scheme like this. A lot of the major shops don’t take part and it’s mainly the indies who support the scheme.”
Frost Borneo opticians in Hart Street has one basket.
Practice manager Clare Willis said: “The baskets always look beautiful in the summer. When you drive through Henley and you see them all in bloom it is stunning.
“They are always well-looked after and the scheme is a great asset to Henley, as is the Christmas tree scheme. We’re always very happy to take part.”
The Villa Marina restaurant in Thames Side has three baskets.
Office manager Sheila Sugg said: “The baskets make the town look more attractive and it helps bring in the tourists, which is good for business.”
Val Stoner has bought two baskets for outside Regatta Court in Wyndale Close, where she lives.
She said: “The baskets help beautify the town. It’s really important we show off the town and how beautiful it is to the thousands of visitors who come to Henley from all over the world.”
Accountants Villars Hayward in Boston Road have two baskets.
Office manager Marion Hayes said: “It’s a nice thing because we are out of the town centre and this helps make our business feel more part of it. It makes the whole place lovely. At the moment the flowers look a bit small but once they grow out and start trailing they always look amazing.”
Sue Lewis, office manager at Knight Frank estate agents in Thames Side, said it was important for the business to support community projects.
She said: “The baskets make the whole town look amazing for visitors over the summer and people who are already here. It helps brighten up the town when it rains as well. One of the great advantages for us is that they are well looked after.”
Tomalin & Son funeral directors in Reading Road have two baskets
Company secretary Claire Jones said: “The uniform baskets across the town look good when everyone has them. We’re always happy to support Henley in Bloom.”
Each basket contains blue, white and lilac flowers, some with hairy leaves to help tackle the town’s air quality problem. The plants are petunia surfinia sky blue and sweet pink, dichondra argentea silver falls, plectranthus madagascariensis variegated mintleaf, begonia illumination white and pelargonium peltatum lilac.
Orders can still be made but baskets may contain a different mix of flowers. Pick up a form from the town hall or email Becky Walker on b.walker@henleytowncouncil.
04 June 2018
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