Doubts are now being cast on the impression given by the Labour-run Penarth Town Council’s widely-promoted claims that the council has won “awards” for its “Penarth in Bloom” initiatives.
The claims are made in a welter of pre-Christmas publicity which appears to suggest that the council’s little-known Penarth in Bloom initiative has received prestigious trophies from one of Wales’s best known environmental pro-gardening organisations – Wales in Bloom.
The town council has prominently headlined the so-called “awards” on its own website and also on its Twitter social media site.
…But today the award organisers, “Wales in Bloom”, have confirmed that, notwithstanding the hype, Penarth Town Council hasn’t actually won anything.
Penarth Council had proclaimed on its website:- “Penarth Town Council is delighted to announce that the Penarth in Bloom pilot projects that took place during 2017 have all been awarded certificates as part of the RHS & Wales in Bloom ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ award scheme.”
Penarth Town Council’s publicity went on to claim “Awards were received for the Community Gardening project in the Arcot Street Triangle, the town centre planter scheme, the development of vegetable and herb beds in the garden at the West House Town Council Offices and for the improvements made in the grounds of the Kymin House on Beach Road.”
However the “Wales in Bloom” version of events is somewhat different from Penarth Town Council’s version of events…
Wales in Bloom 2017 organiser Lynda Goodwin said today that Penarth Town Council had NOT BEEN ENTERED in any of the scheme’s 19 different award categories [ the majority of which each presents 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes] .
Penarth Town Council – she said – had only participated in a separate junior category called “It’s Your Neighbourhood” – a part of the Wales In Bloom scheme which does NOT give any awards but is designed to encourage towns to enter the main competition.
The Penarth Town Council website claims that it has been “awarded certificates” by Wales in Bloom – but Ms Goodwin has made it clear that EVERYONE WHO ENTERS GETS A CERTIFICATE.
In the non-award-giving “It’s Your Neighbourhood” part of the “Wales in Bloom” scheme ( designed to encourage participating organisations to improve) there are 5 levels of merit comprising “Outstanding”, “Thriving”, “Advancing” , “Improving” and “Establishing”. All of Penarth Town Council’s entries were judged to be in the lowest 3 of the 5 categories.
All of them automatically received certificates – but were not eligible to win any awards – and didn’t get any.