Darley Dale schoolchildren win gardening award

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Green fingered schoolchildren have put down their pencils and picked up their trowls and been awarded for their gardening efforts.

Churchtown Primary School, in Church Road, Darley Dale, has been presented with a silver award for Best School Garden by Mike Backler on behalf of East Midlands in Bloom.

Mike, from Darley Dale in Bloom, gave a short talk to the pupils, supported by the head teacher Janine Stillwell and the motivator behind the gardening club, Elaine Goodban, about In Bloom.

On July 8, Rupert Atkinson, one of the judges of East Midlands In Bloom, visited the school to assess the work performed towards the Best School Garden. He spent time talking to the pupils and was immensely impressed by the number of bird feeders and nest boxes, the large bug hotel and insect homes.

Through an active ECO Club, the children take part in mini–beast hunts and produced signs to guide the pupils in good practice.

The school is working towards RHS Level 1, awards in practical horticulture, with a number of planters and tubs decorating the main school area in conjunction with raised beds at the edge of the sports field opposite.

The club came up with a portfolio of activities, which has been maintained covering the growing and harvesting of several crops including potatoes, peas, red currents and strawberries.