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Brandon’s ‘Blooming Barrow’ is the biggest yet

Sam Foster and Becci Maling, of Dannii's Diner, with Cllr Victor Lukaniuk
Sam Foster and Becci Maling, of Dannii's Diner, with Cllr Victor Lukaniuk

Schools, businesses, groups and individuals battled it out in Brandon in Bloom’s third ‘Blooming Barrow’ competition on Sunday.

This year’s contest saw 14 planted wheelbarrows designed around the Desert Island Discs theme, from Tesco’s Sleepy Lagoon theme tune creation to Fledgelings Pre-School’s nursery rhymes inspired entry.

Dannii's Diner's winning 'Canndii Sam' wheelbarrow
Dannii's Diner's winning 'Canndii Sam' wheelbarrow

Organiser Rachel Sobiechowski, who is joint owner of P&R Gardens Supplies, which sponsored the competition as part of the company’s 15th anniversary celebrations, said Sunday’s event was the biggest one yet with more entries than ever before.

“For some, this was their third time taking part which was lovely because you’re able to see them progress – the ideas just keep getting better and better every year,” she added.

Dannii’s Diner’s ‘Canndii Sam’ entry topped the competition’s first-held public vote with its colourful Lego rock concert barrow created in memory of Dannii Foster who died last year.

“Lego was her absolute favourite toy so they set it up with Lego characters in memory of her,” explained Miss Sobiechowski.

Terry and Jake Newell's winning 'Father and Son' entry
Terry and Jake Newell's winning 'Father and Son' entry

Joint second place, and just one point behind Dannii’s Diner, was ‘The Four Seasons’ barrow from Nalan Humphris and Richy King-Edison’s ‘Minion Rock Concert’ based on Brandon Country Park.

Cat Stevens’ ‘Father and Son’ song was the inspiration for Terry and Jake Newell’s entry which featured both a full size and a mini wheelbarrow and won the hearts of fellow competitors.

They were awarded first place in the competitors’ vote, with Fledgelings and the Brandon Heritage Centre coming joint second.

“It was Jake’s fifth birthday the day before and he was over the moon the day after his birthday to win a little trophy,” said Miss Sobiechowski.

“It was all really good fun,” she added.

“When you see them all lined up together, there’s quite a ‘wow’ factor to seeing all the different ideas. Having so many different groups take part, and the schools being different age groups, meant they were all very different too.”

Brandon’s Happy Shackles provided musical entertainment to add to the occasion while youngsters sowed seeds to plant along the flint wall in Thetford Road and enjoyed face-painting and free games.

Discussions are now taking place about the possibility of holding another planted wheelbarrow competition in September. Miss Sobiechowski said it would be based on the autumn festival theme – think scarecrows and pumpkins.


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