Hartlepool Horticultural Show organisers praise efforts to stage event after pandemic break
Green shoots of recovery from the pandemic were on display as Hartlepool Horticultural Show returned at the weekend.
Lots of lovingly grown prize flowers, vegetables and homecrafts filled the marquee at Rift House Recreation Ground on Saturday and Sunday.
Organisers praised the efforts of Hartlepool Borough Council’s events team for allowing the show to take place.
It was cancelled last year because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Growers from all over the North East and further afield entered the show which also featured the National Gladiolus Society’s Northern Exhibition.
Show secretary Phil Orley said: “On the whole with the pandemic and the council events team given a lot to do in a short time, the lads worked their socks off.
"That we got the show on at all was amazing. So many shows have not gone ahead.”
The coveted Tom Hammond Trophy for Best In Show was won by Mick Wood from the Sunderland area for his prize-winning leeks.
The pandemic and lockdowns have led to an increase in people taking up gardening and growing plants.
There were over 100 categories for people to enter, from fuchsias, gladioli, chrysanthemums and roses to vegetables including shallots, cucumbers and leeks.
However, Phil said the weather and other factors meant some sections saw fewer entries than in previous years.
He added: “It’s not been an easy year. It’s been too hot for sweet peas and fuchsias suffered a bit. But the dahlias were up.
“The quality of entries was very good and the vegetables were excellent.”
Other winners included Kevin Tritschler for Best Pot Plant and success in the Heaviest Onion section with a whopper weighing 9lb 9oz.
Father and daughter Tom and Tracy Leck also picked up a number of prizes including Best Box (Floret) for Tracy in the National Gladiolus Society’s Northern Exhibition.
As well as Hartlepool and across the North East, growers from as far away as the Midlands and Cheshire entered the show.
Phil issued an early call for next year to encourage more people to enter the show’s numerous homecraft categories.
It is set to be another busy weekend in Hartlepool with the return of the Waterfront Festival on the marina on Saturday, August 28, and Sunday, August 29.