Bellerby wins Best Kept Village award

Richmond Rotary president Jos Huddleston (centre) presenting a cheque for £400 to John Hutchinson, chairman of Bellerby Council (left) with Rotary organiser David Stewart.

Richmond Rotary Club has named Bellerby as this year’s winner of the Best Kept Village award, followed by Moulton in second place and Caldwell third.

Club officials said that although just nine villages took part this year, the overall standard was extremely high.

Rotary Club member David Stewart, who organised the event praised the efforts of participants and explained the way the wide-ranging contest works:

“We send judges to all the villages during the same two weeks in July and they score each village on seventeen criteria ranging from public spaces and private gardens to the condition of bus shelters, shops, guest houses, inns and the encouragement of wildlife.

“Villages without some features are not penalised.

“After the first scoring a second visit by different judges is organised to the front runners to be sure that the scores are fair.”

Receiving the winning prize of £400, the chairman of Bellerby Parish Council John Hutchinson said: “Winning the competition this year was a lovely surprise.

“When we last won about five years ago, we used the prize to refurbish the telephone box.

“This time I hope that we might be able to support our Community Garden.”

Richmond Rotary Club President Jos Huddleston presented a cheque to Bellerby this week and said that he was delighted that the competition encouraged people to participate and take pride in their community.

“Rotary is an international organisation that has tackled global issues such as the elimination of polio, but it is probably at its best when supporting local communities.

“It was clear that a lot of hard work had taken place in preparation for this year’s Best Kept Village contest.

“Each year the event reminds us of the beautiful area where we live and our exceptional villages well deserve the recognition that Rotary gives them through this challenging competition.”