South West in Bloom are very proud to have Lord and Lady Fellowes as our Bloom Patrons, and we express our grateful thanks and appreciation to them both for their involvement. Our Patrons whenever possible are delighted to attend and present some of our Awards and Trophies at our annual Awards Presentation. Bloom is such an undervalued campaign, given its many outcomes, but it has changed to recognise the value of people and community involvement in the environment and the role of volunteering, as well as quality horticulture. We are honoured to have two Patrons who clearly share and recognise such values and we look forward to working together with them in our future activities.

Details of our Patrons

The Lord Fellowes of West Stafford, DL. Julian started work as an actor but is best known as a writer.  His first film script was "Gosford Park", directed by Robert Altman, which won him the Oscar.  He wrote the scripts for "Vanity Fair," "Young Victoria" and he worked on "The Tourist".  He is responsible for the "book" of the Broadway musicals, "Mary Poppins" and "School of Rock" and he has been nominated for a Tony for the latter.  He has also written two Sunday Times Best Sellers, "Snobs" and "Past Imperfect."  He wrote and directed "Separate Lies" and "From Time to Time" both of which won several awards.  He is the creator, writer and executive producer of "Downton Abbey" for which he has won three Emmys, a Golden Globe, a Special BAFTA, and many other industry awards.  Julian is involved in various charitable organisations with his wife, Emma, as well as being head of the "Talking Books Appeal for the RNIB.

The Lady Fellowes of West Stafford, LVO. Emma, as Lady Emma Kitchener, is the President of The Lord Kitchener National Memorial Fund and the Kitchener Holiday Home in Lowestoft.  She is heavily involved in The Stroke Association, chairing the Life After Stroke Awards, co-chairing a gala dinner at Buckingham Palace in March and taking part in an annual sponsored bicycle ride.  She is Vice President of Flora and Fauna International and Patron of the North Dorset Home Start.  Emma and Julian together are Patrons, Vice Patrons or Ambassadors of the following: Breast Cancer Haven, Cinemagic Belfast, Dorset Blind Association, Families for Children, Pan Pals (pancreatic cancer), The Rainbow Trust, and they are both involved in a new appeal for Alzheimers.  She is lady-in-waiting to HRH Princess Michael of Kent.

About South West in Bloom

South West in Bloom is one of sixteen regional competitions that make up RHS Britain in Bloom, which is the biggest horticultural campaign in Europe. The aim of the community groups that take part each year is to improve and regenerate our local environments and neighbourhoods.  This can be through the imaginative planting of trees, shrubs, flowers and landscaping, conservation and recycling projects, and to sweep away the eyesores that blight our streets, such as litter, graffiti and vandalism.

Each year South West in Bloom organise a Spring Seminar which helps our entrants to network and share ideas, key speakers give presentations during the day and there is opportunity to discuss the main topics of the bloom campaign. Our 2024 Spring Seminar will take place on Thursday 21st March, at RHS Rosemoor, Torrington, EX38 8PH.

We produce two Newsletters, in the Spring and Autumn of each year. 

Our theme for the 2024 Children's Painting Competition is  "60 Years of Bloom - Celebrations and Friendships".  The three age groups in the competition are: up to 6 years, 7 - 11 years and 12 - 16 years. Entry forms will be available in our Spring 2024 newsletter and the closing date for entries is Monday 1st July 2024.  

The South West in Bloom Committee Members and Judges are available to act as mentors for any of our entrants, so if advice and guidance would be helpful, please do let us know by contacting 

Britain in Bloom, which is organised by the Royal Horticultural Society, is focused on Three core pillars;

  • Horticultural Achievement
  • Environmental Responsibility
  • Community Participation

Ideally, your committee will represent your community, working with representatives from your local authority, local business, residents and gardening enthusiasts. Judging of your area takes place in July, using the criteria of the national Britain in Bloom competition. You will be awarded a Gold, Silver-Gilt, Silver, Bronze or Certificate of Commendation based on marks accumulated over the disciplines.  2024 regional judging will be taking place between Monday 1st July to Friday 26th July. 

The competitive element is designed to be fair to everyone, with entries grouped into categories based on population taken from the electoral roll. (This figure is obtainable from the Electoral Roll Officer at your local authority). Details of the Bloom Categories are also listed in our Newsletter.  At the end of the year, our Judges select a number of entries to represent the region in the following year’s national Britain in Bloom.

To help you succeed, you will need to generate funding from your own funding events, cash or benefits in kind from local business, or by attracting sponsorship or grants.

Being involved in South West in Bloom promotes a tremendous sense of community, and above all, is fun and very rewarding.  

South West In Bloom's Regional Coordinator, Melissa, can be contacted at: 

Tel No: 07875 849809  Email: