Gold Award for Kings Hill
Kings Hill has won a gold and a silver gilt award in the South & South East in Bloom competition – proving that the 38,000 hours its landscaping team and community volunteers put in has paid off, making the development one of the most attractive places to live and work in the UK.
The development was awarded gold in the ‘Business Landscape of the Year’ category and silver gilt in the ‘Village/Town/City Centre’ category.
The judges, who included TV gardener Jim Buttress, noted ‘the well-designed landscaping and beautiful surroundings, combined with the excellent choices and variety of plants offering impact and creating colour and interest throughout the year’.
They also praised the inclusion of conservation areas and were impressed by the encouragement given to schoolchildren with the introduction of raised allotment beds and fruit trees planted in the grounds of The Discovery School.
Attention was drawn to the significant trees on the development, including a ‘very fine specimen walnut tree’ at 17 Kings Hill Avenue and the fact there is ‘an excellent standard of cleanliness with no graffiti, litter or detritus’.
“The quality of the landscape and ecology of the development is of paramount importance to us and we take great care to plant not only what is attractive but which also provides a habitat for wildlife” said Susan Davies, Property and Estate manager for Kings Hill developer Liberty Property Trust.
“As a developer we recognise how important people’s surroundings are and have a ‘landscape first’ policy to create beautiful outdoor spaces where they can relax, exercise and have fun and which are accessible to everyone who works, lives or visits Kings Hill, to leave a lasting legacy for generations to come.
“This year alone 11,000 shrubs, 6,550 spring bulbs and 135 trees were put in as well as swathes of wild flowers to add to the seasonal colour already provided by existing planting. There is a recently created rose garden around the WWII listed Control Tower, which is proving very popular.
“Local children gave us a helping hand sowing seeds and putting in plant plugs and we have added information boards to tell people about the different species of plants that thrive here, so they can grow them in their own gardens.”
Liberty is advised by project ecologist Susan Deakin and the landscaping carried out by Coblands Landscapes, who have been tending Kings Hill for two decades.
The South and South East in Bloom award is part of the Royal Horticultural Society’s Britain in Bloom campaign. Its objectives are to encourage people to garden, improve care for the environment and bring communities together to make our neighbourhoods, villages, towns and cities better places to live, work and visit.