Stroud in Bloom has taken a year out of the Heart of England in Bloom awards and launched an appeal for more committee members.
It is believed to be the first time since Stroud in Bloom was launched that the town has not entered the competition.
Earlier this year Malcolm Tarling, who chaired Stroud in Bloom for nine years, died of pancreatic cancer, and Doreen Frusher, acting chair of Stroud in Bloom, said the committee decided that without extra support, it did not feel it could enter the awards.
“We felt if we can’t do it properly we shouldn’t take part. It’s a huge task and we urgently need fresh young blood on the committee,” she said.
Mrs Frusher says the committee need fresh ideas and community input therefore there is a need for new committee members.
“You don’t have to be knowledgeable about gardening. You need to be willing to get your hands dirty and have loads of enthusiasm,” she said.
“Stroud in Bloom is far more than just flowers. It’s about biodiversity, involving the community to improve the local environment and preserving our history.
“It is not a full time commitment, work parties are held throughout the year as and when required, obviously increasing during late spring and early summer, prior to the RHS Britain in Bloom judging date in July and the committee meets monthly.”
The committee works closely with Stroud Town Council and Stroud District Council, also other organisations such as The Landscape Group at Stratford Park, The Museum in the Park, Stroud Valleys Project and many more who together work to enhance Stroud and improve the environment.
Stroud in Bloom volunteers plant and care for ‘Adopt a Plots’ which are previously neglected plots of land around the town, and also care for the Stroud Hospital patients’ garden.
They arrange litter picks and work parties and encourage community organisations, such as schools and youth groups, to do their bit in improving their parts of Stroud.
Mrs Frusher says Stroud In Bloom is also in need of funding as they do not receive any funding from outside sources.
“We used to raise money every year thanks to Malcolm running plant sales. We haven’t been able to do that and will eventually run out of funding unless the committee looks at ways to raise money.”
Mrs Frusher has agreed to stay as chair of Stroud in Bloom until a replacement can be found.
“None of us are getting any younger and we so need support now to ensure Stroud in Bloom continues,” she said.
To find out more about becoming part of Stroud in Bloom contact Doreen Frusher on [email protected]