The final results of the Garden Centre Association’s annual Christmas Competition have been announced and Sherborne-based Castle Gardens and Yeovil-based Brimsmore Gardens have both scooped top national awards in the Garden Centre category, with Castle taking the top award and Brimsmore coming third in the country up against garden centres across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, this is the eighth time that Castle Gardens has received the coveted national accolade for its Christmas displays.
Judges commended the beautiful Christmas displays at each centre, which allowed visitors to wander through endless twinkly lights, sparkly baubles and shiny ornaments, rubbing shoulders with Jon Snow from Game of Thrones and enjoying the regimented toy soldiers and graceful ballerinas in the Nutcracker display.
This year also marked the first time that The Apple Tree Farm Shop, based at Brimsmore Gardens, was judged and it received high praise from the judges for its "enticing, comprehensive and easy to shop range of local products", as well as the Christmas hampers available, filled with a selection of goods from the farm shop, which is all stocked “in wonderful little huts.”
Louise Burks, director of The Gardens Group, explains; “We’re delighted to win this national award for the eighth time, it’s a real achievement and one we are extremely proud of. Our Christmas displays demonstrate a real team effort across The Gardens Group, as everyone works hard to make sure they look their absolute best, from the opening in October, right up until Christmas. Also, for The Apple Tree Farm Shop to receive such high praise in its first year being judged is incredible. We make a real effort to stock the very best produce from local makers, growers and butchers, so it’s fantastic to get this recognition on a national scale.”