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Groundwork wins award at RHS Chelsea

Posted on 23 May 2014

A Groundwork garden exhibit has wowed the judges at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

Groundwork’s X Marks the Spot’ exhibit, which was awarded the RHS Bronze Discovery Award by the judges, demonstrated how even the smallest, most unpromising piece of land can be transformed quickly and easily to create local treasures that benefit communities.

The exhibit features - inspired by a Groundwork project in Hertfordshire - included willow sculptures, native wildflower meadows, a log pile and mini-beast habitats, a pond and bog garden, an area surrounded by wildlife planting and a recycled plastic bottle greenhouse.

Summer campaign

The charity also launched its X Marks the Spot summer campaign at the flower show. The campaign, which highlights the positive impact that green spaces have on people’s lives and warns that up to 20 million people (1) in the UK are not able to enjoy their benefits, will encourage more people to celebrate and protect green spaces by volunteering, fundraising or spreading the word about their ‘treasured spaces’.

(Film: Irene Lewington talks about her treasured space in Sandford Court, London)

Businesses and celebrities who have already come out in support of the campaign include PWC, Lesley Garrett, Deborah Meaden, Charlie Dimmock, Tommy Walsh and Baroness Phloella Benjamin.

'Love of all things green'

Groundwork’s chief executive, Graham Duxbury, said: “The positive impact that green space has on people’s lives is well documented, but not everyone is able to enjoy their benefits, with some communities being poorly served and the hardest hit by cuts.

“We know that the green space that matters to people is often their local park, and that people without gardens use parks more regularly, but local authorities have already cut £75m from open space budgets and we are concerned about the impact of the spending reductions to come. New ways of creating and preserving them are needed.

“The people who come to Chelsea share a love of all things green. The message we wanted to get across – both with our exhibit and our wider X Marks the Spot campaign - is that this is also true for those people who can’t come to Chelsea, who don’t have a large garden where they can experience the calming, restorative, healing benefits of green space.”

For further information:  contact Ben Leach, Senior Digital & Marketing Officer or Alister Head, Communications Assistant at Groundwork UK on  0121 2368565

Notes to Editors:

  • About X Marks the Spot:  Groundwork is a national charity working to create better places across the UK. Every day, we see the huge and life-changing impact green spaces have on people’s lives. We know that people everywhere and of every age need places and times to treasure – whether it’s a bench for reflection, a place to grow veg or somewhere to kick a football. But with an estimated 20 million people in the UK not able to enjoy the benefits of green space we also know that some communities are missing out. X Marks the Spot is a campaign to encourage the public to celebrate and protect treasured spaces nationwide by volunteering, fundraising or spreading the word about their treasured spaces.
  •  (1) Extrapolated from Natural England MENE research:  9% of the population (4 million people) haven’t ‘experienced nature’ in the last 12 months and 36% (16 million) only did so infrequently. This means that 20 million people aren’t getting the full benefit of green space.