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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

From seeds to success as community gardeners recognised at Translink Ulster in Bloom Awards

Representatives from Cullybackey which was awarded the Large Village award for Mid & East Antrim.

Representatives from Cullybackey which was awarded the Large Village award.

Hard working volunteers, community gardeners and council staff from across Northern Ireland were recognised and celebrated for their hard work and dedication as the results were announced for the 2023 Translink Ulster in Bloom awards. 


In an event hosted at Lisburn Civic Centre, the popular annual horticultural competition celebrated the year-round work of green-fingered gardening enthusiasts across the country and officially recognised the most beautiful plant and floral displays and environmental impact achieved in local cities, towns and villages.  


The 2023 Award winners by category were: City - Derry City (Derry City & Strabane District Council); Large Town – Coleraine (Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council; Town - Donaghadee (Ards & North Down Borough Council); Small Town- Randalstown (Antrim & Newtownabbey Borough Council); Large Village - Cullybackey (Mid & East Antrim Borough Council); Village - Donaghmore (Mid Ulster District Council); and Small Village - Ballynure (Antrim & Newtownabbey Borough Council).  

Representatives from Ahoghill which was awarded a second place.

Special Award winners included: Antrim Town Centre for Most Improved Award; Eight South in Carryduff for Horticultural Impact; Ballystudder for Sustainability in Practice; and Moira Girlguiding for the Children and Young People special award.   


Richard Wallace, from Ballynure and District Residence Group, was announced as the winner of the Ken Powles Community Champion Award in recognition of the lasting and positive difference he has made to his local area by embracing the ‘Ulster in Bloom’ ethos.  


The Best Floral Station title was won by Foyle Street Bus Station (Derry City and Strabane District Council)   

Community volunteers in Ballystrudder

Community volunteers in Ballystrudder

Speaking at the results event, Translink Chairman Dr Michael Wardlow said:   


“Translink prides itself in helping ensure everyone is better connected and the annual Ulster in Bloom awards are a fantastic example of what can be achieved when communities come together and put community spirit into action. The awards also showcase the work and commitment of our Translink staff in stations and halts across Northern Ireland in bringing biodiversity, plants and flowers to these spaces.

"On behalf of Translink, I’d like to congratulate all our Ulster in Bloom winners and participants, their hard work and the hours spent planning, planting and pruning help greatly improve the local environment in our cities, towns and villages.” 


The Translink Ulster in Bloom Competition is co-ordinated by the Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA). Councillor Hazel Legge, Vice President, NILGA, said: 


“These well-deserved awards demonstrate the value which the 11 councils and our Ulster in Bloom community groups give to caring for and improving our local spaces, whether they’re large or small, rural or urban. The participants and winners from the 2023 Translink Ulster in Bloom campaign have yet again demonstrated the positive impact which can be achieved for both the wider environment and the local community through hard work and dedication.   


“On behalf of NILGA, congratulations to everyone and thank you for your ongoing support and enthusiasm.” 

Table showing winners and runner up in the Translink Ulster in Bloom 2023 competition.
Table showing winners and runner up in the Translink Ulster in Bloom 2023 competition.

If you’re interested in getting involved in the Translink Ulster in Bloom 2024 Competition contact NILGA on 028 9079 8972.  


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