Who are we?

We are a wholly voluntary community-led project, set up in 2012 following the demise of the pre-2011 Basingstoke & Deane Borough Council (B&DBC)-run BIB. Our Committee of volunteers relies on funding from B&DBC and other sources such as local businesses and/or interested third parties such as Water companies in order to fulfil our goals vis-a-vis the local community.

Our mission

  • To organise annual Gardening and Photographic Competitions throughout the Borough, thereby...
  • To promote participation from individuals, community groups, schools, and businesses, and enhance residential and public areas
  • To continue expanding in activities reflecting the ‘in Bloom’ theme

2017 Objective

  • To organise for 2017, our annual FREE OF CHARGE Gardening and Photographic Competitions open to ALL throughout Basingstoke & Deane Borough, thus promoting participation from individual residents, residential communities/associations, social/other community groups, schools (infant to secondary), and commercial areas as well as individual businesses.
  • The competitions comprise multiple categories and aim to involve all community sectors, age groups, areas, etc., notably promoting accessibility to 'less affluent' residents/associations, as participation is free or charge.
  • To promote and encourage physical activity, healthy/healthier living, creativity, discovery, team-work, a sense of achievement, and all associated physical/ psychological benefits across all ages and communities/sectors within the Borough.
  • To generate interest (ideally passion!) for discovering, enhancing, and protecting the natural environment, from the smallest private ‘haven’ to the larger community, commercial, and/or public spaces.
  • To stimulate all senses and mental focus on the 'miracle of nature' surrounding us which can so easily be taken for granted, as both 'gardening' and 'photography' are conducive to outdoor, weight-bearing, varied movement, attentive and detailed observation, and restoring contact with 'nature'.
  • To support/help provide 'educational' opportunities to local resident communities, notably among the less privileged, via FREE OF CHARGE gardening/planting workshops (e.g. 'how to easily plant a hanging basket' / 'How to grow healthy veg. in a small space', etc.).
  • To promote similar 'educational' incentives within schools via strategic selection of competition titles.
  • Actively to engage individual businesses and promote competition alongside ‘team spirit’ within commercial/corporate areas in creatively enhancing the approach to/frontage of commercial premises, streets, and areas.
  • To stimulate artistic skills and beauty awareness by motivating people to immerse themselves into Hampshire's rich rural and/or urban landscape (including one's own garden!) to capture photo opportunities. This would clearly awaken/stimulate enthusiasm for, and hopefully over time lead to commitment to, preserving and cherishing the environment.
  • A modest start could, with appropriate manpower/funding support, generate substantial long term quality of life enhancement, environmental appreciation, nature preservation/protection, not just for those benefiting today from the many advantages offered by the Borough, but for future generations who would embrace the healthier lifestyle and love and respect for Nature learned from their parents. This would in due course reduce costs in healthcare, social welfare, and related sectors, as well as promote optimal prospects for our precious local/regional environment.
  • To continue expanding in activities reflecting the ‘in Bloom’ theme subject to adequate manpower and funding support.


2016 Achievements

Garden Competition
  • 108 competition entries – highest ever and >100% increase over 2014 (NB: no competitions in 2015)!
  • Eleven categories (previously seven)
  • Four Schools’ entries over three categories
  • Impressively high standards and close results in some categories, meriting HC (Highly Commended) awards
  • Unfortunately fewer Schools’ entries than in 2014

Photo Competition
  • 69 photos (against 123 in 2014)
  • 17 competitors (against 30 in 2014)
  • Four categories (as previously)
  • Superb quality and variety of photos

2016 Gardening Workshops

  • One well-attended and enthusiastically received workshop at the Ridgeway Community Centre, Buckskin, primarily intended for Sovereign Housing Association residents – each participant proudly took their planted pot home for growing on.

2016 Other Promotional Events

Three promotional/’planting demo’ events, respectively at:
  • The Malls (town centre)
  • Glebe Gardens (town centre)
  • The Ridgeway Centre (Buckskin) alongside their 'Jubilee Tea Party'

Three door-to-door competition leaflet drop-off sessions


Due to lack of funding and ‘manpower’, the Basingstoke in Bloom Committee reluctantly decided to cancel the 2015 competitions. Much time and effort was dedicated instead to recruiting much needed volunteer support and seeking additional sources of funding and sponsorship, with a view to re-launching fresh, enhanced competitions in 2016. 2015 was therefore a ‘fallow year’ in preparation for a blossoming 2016.

2014 Achievements

Garden Competition
  • 52 competition entries
  • Seven categories
  • PLUS seven entries for Schools' 'Single Container' competition
  • Impressively high standards & close results in some categories, meriting HC (Highly Commended) awards
Photo Competition
  • 123 photos
  • 30 Competitors
  • Four categories
  • Superb quality and variety of photos
  • Very close scores justified HC (Highly Commended) awards in all four categories!

2013 Achievements

Garden Competition
  • 65 competition entries
  • Seven categories
  • PLUS 9 entries into special Schools’ ‘Single Container’ competition

Photo Competition
  • 95 competition entries
  • Four categories

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