Belfast Telegraph

Revealed: Ulster in Bloom competition winners - is your town on the list?

By Ann W Schmidt

The green-fingered folk of one part of Northern Ireland are celebrating after a triple triumph in the Translink Ulster in Bloom contest.

The competition recognises horticultural beauty and talent in Northern Ireland's cities, towns and villages.

While Belfast played second fiddle to Derry city in the largest category, a triangle of north Antrim locations about three miles apart from each other managed to steal the limelight.

Ballymena took the large town award, Ahoghill was the best small town, and Cullybackey won first place for large village, as well as taking the most-improved title.

Elsewhere, Coleraine won best town, Castlecaulfield won the village award and Charlestown won the small village award.

There were a total of 156 entries in the competition, and all 11 councils participated.

Meanwhile, the roses in towns trophy went to Lisburn.

This award is given by Belfast City Council to the city, town or village outside Belfast that uses roses in public spaces to the best advantage.

Special awards were also given out to recognise efforts to support biodiversity and to locations with outstanding plant and floral presentations.

Alderman Freda Donnelly, the vice president of the Northern Ireland Local Government Association, said that the competition was all about creating a better environment.

"People in local places can really influence local decisions, which is great for democracy and great for Northern Ireland," she added.

"We want to champion the role of communities and councils in decision making, take pride in the places we love and invest in them."

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