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Bronze for St John's. 1 October 2003

St John's village was awarded bronze at the Britain in Bloom finals held in London last night (Tuesday).

Board representative Peter Dale and his wife Elizabeth received a framed certificate from broadcaster Monty Don at the awards ceremony staged at the Guildhall by the Royal Horticultural Society.

St John's was a finalist in the village category. The highest achiever in the section was Drumnadrochit in the Scottish Highlands which received a silver gilt. Heysham in Cumbria; Scarva, in Co. Down, Northern Ireland; and Ravensfield Old Village, South Yorkshire, won silvers, while Hawkshead, Cumbria, also received bronze.

Tourism Minister David Cretney said: 'There is no guarantee any entrant will take home an award so achieving bronze standard is down to the hard work of all those involved. St John's stands out for being a clean, well maintained village with a very special historic significance for our Island and residents who take pride in their environment. The village's success is a credit to German Commissioners, their sponsors and every resident of St John's who pulled out all the stops to ensure it looked its best throughout the summer.'

Mr Dale commented: 'I was very pleased to receive the bronze award on behalf of the commissioners and I'd like to thank everyone for the help and co-operation received throughout the year. The de-briefing session with the RHS judges was very informative and gave me a lot of food for thought. I hope to be able to pass on the knowledge to next year's finalist.'

The Britain in Bloom competition, under the auspices of the Royal Horticultural Society, aims to encourage communities to make long term improvements to their local environment. All local authorities on the Isle of Man are invited to participate in the Island in Bloom competition each year, which is co-ordinated by the Department of Tourism and Leisure, and the overall winner goes forward to represent the Island in the Britain in Bloom finals. Last year Ramsey was awarded bronze in the town category.

This year's Island in Bloom winners will be announced in November, and the overall winner will have the opportunity to represent the Isle of Man in the Britain in Bloom finals next year.

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