TEWKESBURY scooped Silver-Gilt in the Town category at the Britain in Bloom with the RHS UK Finals Awards ceremony for 2015 last night.

More than 1,000 Bloom groups from across Britain were vying for the coveted awards.

Of these, just 70 finalists were chosen to represent their region in the UK finals with Tewkesbury representing the Heart of England.

Host James Alexander-Sinclair, designer and BBC Gardening expert, said: “Britain in Bloom is one of those great national institutions which never ceases to astound me.

"It not only brings together communities, improves our environment and fosters civic pride, but also helps to inspire creativity, spreads joy and laughter and invigorates friendships.

“Tewkesbury is a wonderful example of all that’s best about Britain in Bloom and the amazing people who roll up their sleeves to make change happen.

"Let nobody underestimate the power of flowers.”

The Britain in Bloom with the RHS awards ceremony is a chance to celebrate the amazing work carried out by dedicated volunteers to recognise excellence, innovation and a commitment to keeping the UK’s villages, towns and cities clean, green and beautiful.

The hard work of Bloom groups across the country supplements public services – with almost 300,000 volunteers donating up to 10.9 million hours a year, equivalent to almost £70million at the National Minimum Wage. They also help to turn grey areas of Britain green and enrich people’s life through plants.

The Britain in Bloom with the RHS judging panel, headed by Roger Burnett, met with representatives of each finalist throughout the summer to assess each of the 70 Bloom campaigns against three key criteria: horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility.

Chairman of the UK Judging Panel Roger Burnett said: “This has been a vintage year for Britain in Bloom with communities across the country coming together to create wonderful floral displays that benefit not just the individuals involved, but their communities and the wider environment.

"Thanks to the work of Britain in Bloom, our pollinators are better supported, once neglected areas of our towns, villages and cities are turning from grey to green, and communities are coming together with a shared purpose.

“The standard of entries this year has been incredibly high.

"It is an honour to recognise and celebrate the work these amazing people do to build stronger, healthier and happier communities through gardening.”

Norton in Hales was awarded the ultimate community gardening prize winning the Champion of Champions 2015 title, meaning the town is arguably the cleanest, greenest and most beautiful location in Britain.

A number of discretionary awards were also given to communities and individuals who demonstrated excellence in a particular area of the campaign.

These included awards for young people’s involvement, environmental sustainability and tourism, amongst others.