Brighter Uckfield celebrates best Uckfield gardens

Brighter Uckfield volunteers presented trophies and certificates to winners of their Best Garden Competition yesterday.

There ceremony was held in the Council Chamber in Uckfield Civic Centre. Beryl Venables announced the winners and the trophies were presented by Brighter Uckfield chairman Ian Smith.


Winners of the Brighter Uckfield Best Garden Competition with their awards.

Judge Dee Russell spent three weeks visiting the gardens of entrants and was thanked for judging, encouraging the entrants, and taking photographs of their gardens.

Her comments included “Breath-taking, a joy to visit; Beautifully designed and full of interest and colour; The colour packed a punch; Very impressive and really has the wow factor; A pleasure to visit.” Read all her comments below.

Uckfield Chamber of Commerce was thanked for funding new trophies for the competition. Ian Smith said Brighter Uckfield hoped to replace more of them next year.

The winners were:

Best Front Garden – Annie and Paul Lock

Beautifully designed and full of interest and colour – pots of all shapes and sizes with plants spilling over their edges.

It made the judge smile with the delightful quirky ideas and mature, healthy, abundance of colour. A worthy winner. Congratulations Annie and Paul.


Annie Lock accepts the trophy for best front garden from Ian Smith, chairman of Brighter Uckfield.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Front Garden.

Best Back Garden – Pauline Brown

Breath-taking, a joy to visit. The garden is a real challenge as it’s so steep, but terraced with railway sleepers and steps.

Though north facing and part shielded by a tree, it’s full of roses, campanulas, anenomes, hibiscus, lilies, dahlias and sweet peas. There’s a small pond and waterfall, and seating area. A triumph in challenging garden conditions, Pauline.


Pauline Brown accepts the trophy for Best Back Garden.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Back Garden.

Best Small Front Garden – Fiona Barallon

As soon as I parked close by, I knew which garden I was to judge as the colour packs a punch. Hydrangeas and roses with bright summer bedding – all a delight. Congratulations Fiona.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Small Front Garden. Fiona Barallon was unable to attend the ceremony to collect her trophy.

Best Small Back Garden – Georgie Dorrington

A lovely flat garden with a beautiful curved brick wall giving shelter and character and ideal for climbing plants. All the heucheras are like a patchwork qulit. Overall it is very impressive and really has the wow factor. Congratulations Georgie.


Georgie Dorrington with her trophie and certificate for winning Best Small Back Garden.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Small Back Garden.

Highly Commended Small Back Garden – John Forster

A lovely garden on different levels. The old pond, filled in, is now a lush bog garden. There’s a rose arch, seating area, birtd bath and feeder and cottage garden plants. A pleasure to visit. Well done, John.


John Forster after receiving his prize for highly commended small back garden.

Highly Commended Small Back Garden – Christine Fogden

Another terraced garden because of the gradient. Full of colour and interest, magnolia, wisteria, red robin, mock orange, fuchsias, roses and lavender. The judge admires this daily when dog walking. Well done, Christine.


Christine Fogden accepts her award for Highly Commended Small Back Garden.

Best New Garden – Geoffrey Forster

Started only last May this small new garden, full of memories from past gardens is already very colourful. There’s honeysuckle, roses, campanula, lupins, hollyhocks and irises to name just a few. What a delightful garden in a short time. Congratulations Geoffrey.


Geoffrey Forster winner of Best New Garden with Brighter Uckfield chairman Ian Smith.


Judges pictures of the Best New Garden.

Most Unusual Garden – Alistair Sandell

This special garden was made from an unused wasteland full of litter purchased from Uckfield Town Council and divided into plots which retain the original former hospital walls. Alistair’s garden is full of intrest with fruit, vegetables and flowers, a shed, waterbutt and a chair on which to sit and enjoy this unusual garden.


Judge’s pictures of the Most Unusual Garden. Alistair Sandell was unavailable to collect his award.

Best Container Garden – Val Bray

This front garden has been covered in membrane, then shingle, pebbles and rocks and has an array of pots full of colourful flowers, some bought, some rescued, and giving a lovely welcome as you approach.


Prize for Best Container Garden goes to Val Bray.


Judge’s pictures of Val Bray’s Best Container Garden.

Best Revamped Garden – Robin and Daphne Hewlett

If it’s not recycled, upcycled or quirky, then it doesn’t belong in this garden. The long garden has been divided into rooms and is full of great ideas. All your hard work in revamping has paid off. Well done Robin and Daphne.


Robin and Daphne Hewlett accept their trophy for Best Revamped Garden.


Best Vegetable Garden – Robert Crozier

An arch takes you from Robert’s very attractive garden to his well maintained and very productive vegetable garden – lettuce, rocket, parsnips, beetroot, radishes, broadbeans, peas, runner beans, sweetcorn, courgettes, and fruit, pears, plum raspberries, tayberries, blueberries, gooseberries, blackberries, strawberries, and rhubarb, and greenhouse, tomatoes and cucumbers. Wow. Congratulations Robert.


Robert Crozier accepts his trophy for Best Vegetable Garden.


Judge’s pictures of Best Vegetable Plot.

Best Overall Garden – Julie Eiloart

The judge said this was a truly lovely garden to visit and very well thought out. It’s packed with plants including tomatoes and peppers, a banana plant, a tree fern, olive tree, clematis, lilies and irises. There are wildlife-friendly plants. Every corner is used, everything is healthy. Congratulations Julie.


Julie Eiloart with her trophy for Overall Best Garden.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Overall Garden.

Best Community Garden – Keld Close

What was an overgrown unsightly area is now maturing into a well-loved and tended centre of this community. It’s packed with colour and scents, and with its benches provides a beautiful oasis in which to sit. Congratulations to those involved.


Betty Fairbrass accepts a trophy for Best Community Garden on behalf of Keld Close residents.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Community Garden.

Best Communal Garden – Shaftesbury Court

This is a lovely garden for the residents. It has a large pond with irises and water lilies, residents’ own patio gardens and balconies, mature trees and bushes with pots full of colour.

Money from raffles pays for the plants and residents also contribute their ideas and take pride in their garden. Thank you Anita.


The award for Best Communal Garden goes to Shaftsbury Court.

Best Revamped Communal Garden – Millington Court

This riverside area has been revamped by Gary to provide an attractive, tranquil place for residents to sit. It’s full of colour with flowerbeds, shrubs, and pots. Congratulations Gary on all you’ve achieved and I know the residents appreciate.


Gary Nokes accepts the award for Best Revamped Communal Garden on behalf of Millington Court.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Revamped Communal Garden.

Best Church Garden – Cornerstone

Linda Hallett has done an amazing job over many years on this almost impossible, very sloping, large and inaccessible site beside the church. It’s a lovely colourful bank of mature perennials. What perseverance and dedication. Congratulations Linda.


Linda Hallett accepts the award for Best Church Garden on behalf of Cornerstone Church.

Best School – Rocks Park Primary

Rocks Park Primary School has a wonderful area where they grow vegetables, fruits, and flowers, and an orchard with apple trees.

Children learn to sow the seeds, tend the plants and harvest them. It’s been an excellent projet over many years and deserves to win.


School governor David Brown accepts a trophy on behalf of Rocks Park Primary School for Best School Garden.

Best Pub – Brickmakers Arms

As always, bright, well-chosen, well-tended plants filling and over-spilling the containers, baskets and window boxes that welcome you to this small friendly pub. Congratulations again Helen.


James Dell and Helen Bromwich of the Brickmakers Arms accept the award for Best Pub Garden.


Judges pictures of the Best Pub Garden.

Best Commercial Garden – Thorne Civil Engineers

Here the forecourt has been made very colourful and attractive with weeping cherry trees, lavenders and hebe, fuchsias, and grasses with a slate dressing suppressing weeds. It’s a very good example of how a car park can be made attractive.


Richard Thorne, of Thorne Civil Engineers, accepts a trophy for Best Commercial Garden.


Judge’s pictures of the Best Commercial Garden.

See also:

Where to go and what to do in Uckfield this weekend

Special gift brings tears to the eyes of charity founder

Train drivers’ union calls three days of strikes

Find local businesses in our Uckfield Directory

How to advertise on



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