Lauder wins national prize at Beautiful Scotland Awards

Lauder In Bloom secretary Ray Theedam Parry and chairman Alistair Smith with provost of Fife, Jim Leishman.
Lauder In Bloom secretary Ray Theedam Parry and chairman Alistair Smith with provost of Fife, Jim Leishman.

The volunteers tasked with keeping Lauder clean, tidy and blooming all year round were rewarded with their first-ever national award last week.

Lauder In Bloom were named winners in the large village category of this year’s Beautiful Scotland Awards, and went on to take home the New Entrant Trophy.

They gathered alongside other community groups, local authorities and businesses from across Scotland in Dunfermline last Thursday for the annual awards, organised by environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful.

The team, which formed only three years ago, was praised for its efforts in bringing colour to Lauder and transforming a number of areas throughout the town by working with local businesses and other community groups.

Lauder In Bloom secretary Ray Theedam Parry said: “It’s the first time we have entered so we were absolutely over the moon to be awarded gold. We are absolutely ecstatic and couldn’t believe it when were named overall category winners.

“We have a core team of 11 volunteers but nearer 100 people chip in to do various odds and ends whether it’s litter picking or weeding and watering. We hold lots of community events throughout the year and are always working with groups like the Scouts and the Guides and like to get the school involved too.

“We are really luck here that we have brilliant support from everyone in Lauder, we couldn’t do any of this without them.”
The awards score entrants on horticultural achievement, community participation and environmental responsibility and are noncompetitive.

“We really like that they are noncompetitive,” Ray added. “You learn a lot from other groups which is really inspiring.

“We are already planning for the next year and hope for more of the same and beyond.”

Carole Noble, operations director of Keep Scotland Beautiful, added: “Lauder volunteers have worked tirelessly to ensure that the local spaces and places that they treasure are maintained to excellent standards. I would like to commend them on their efforts.”

The group holds its AGM next Monday, September 18 in the Lauderdale Hotel at 7pm. New volunteers are always welcome and are invited to attend.