Horncastle really was bloomin’ lovely during the summer, after being named as a runner-up in the 2018 Lincolnshire Best Kept Village and Small Town competition.
The Town Council decided to enter Horncastle in the event which is run by the The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE).
With the help of a number of other organisations, the council’s efforts paid off as Horncastle took second place behind Long Sutton in the Class Four category for small market towns with a population of between 2,501 and 7,000.
It was an outstanding effort as Horncastle saw off the challengre of a number of other towns - including several previous winners.
This year’s competition saw its highest ever number of entrants with 111 towns and villages competing for the title.
The winners and runners up in each category are:-
Class 1 Small Village (population 100 - 1000)
Winner: Harlaxton. Joint Runners Up: Scothern and Denton.
Class 2 Medium Village (population 1001 – 2,500) -
Winner: Claypole. Joint Runners Up: Fleet Hargate and Great Gonerby.
Class 3 Large Village (population 2,501 – 7,000) -
Winner: Kirton. Runner Up: Nettleham.
Class 4 Small Market Town (population 2,501 – 7,000) -
Winner: Long Sutton. Runner Up: Horncastle.
Past Winners: (prestigious category exclusive to class winners from previous 4 years) -
Winner: Holbeach. Runner Up: Crowland.
All winners receive a plaque and certificate to display proudly within their village or small town.
Chairman of CPRE Lincolnshire, Tim Machin, said “Standards this year were very high and winners have been validated against their largest ever number of competitors.
“We are delighted to announce this year’s worthy winners and it is great to see so many communities taking such pride in where they live.”
The Lincolnshire competition is in its 56th year and, for many rural communities, is an important event in the annual calendar.
The Best Kept Village Competitions were first introduced to celebrate the Coronation in 1953.
Lincolnshire’s competition, run by the CPRE started a few years later in 1962 and is one of the largest operating.
Communities enter each year and are visited by a panel of judges who assess the entrants against the following criteria which includes: overall appearance and condition; absence of litter; unauthorised/unsightly refuse; absence of graffiti/vandalism; dumps on verges; general condition of roads and paths; provision for wildlife (such as bird boxes/feeders/bat boxes) and wildflowers.