UK Grower Awards 2017 winners honoured

    Neame Lea Nurseries has become Ornamentals Grower of the Year last week in London’s Covent garden. The overall winner also took the Protected Ornamental Nursery of the Year Award.

    Neame Lea is one of the largest Ornamental Plant Producers in the United Kingdom across a range of crops including Bedding, Perennials, Shrubs, Herbs and Vegetables. It operates from 42 acres of glasshouse production in the Lincolnshire area, and employs over 500 people at peak times.

    More than 300 professionals from the UK production horticulture industry gathered in London’s Covent Garden last week to hear the names of the winners of the UK Grower Awards 2017 revealed.

    The winners who were presented with their trophies at a glittering awards event at the prestigious Grand Connaught Rooms, were selected by an independent panel of expert industry judges from this year’s crop of entries from leading UK ornamental, fruit and vegetable growers, and associated production businesses.

    Big winners on the night included Place UK which took the award for Soft Fruit Grower of the Year and then went on to take the overall Edibles Grower of the Year. Likewise Neame Lea Nursery did the double, taking Protected Ornamental Nursery of the Year and overall Ornamentals Grower of the Year.

    NFU president Meurig Raymond addressed the event which was opened by Horticulture Week editor Kate Lowe. Comedian Jo Caulfield presented the awards.

    The winners in full:

    Edibles Grower of the Year – Place UK

    -Ornamentals Grower of the Year, sponsored by ICL – Neame Lea Nurseries

    -Consumer Marketing Campaign – Porters Fuchsias, Home of Happy Plants

    -Top Fruit Grower of the Year, sponsored by AG Recruitment – AC Goatham & Son

    -Lifetime Achievement – Nicholas Marston, Berry Gardens

    -Top Sales or Marketing professional – Natalie Porter, Porters Fuchsias. Presented by Perennial

    -Best Production Manager sponsored by De Lacy Executive – Andy Roe, Flavourfresh

    -Outstanding Contribution to the Industry – Bob Thomas, Intercrop

    -Best New Variety: Bedding & Pot Plant – Petunia ‘NightSky’, Ball Colegrave

    -Best New Variety: Top/Soft Fruit – Driscoll’s Victoria, Berry Gardens

    -Specialist Ornamentals Grower of the Year – Double H Nurseries

    -Best Environmental Initiative – Flowers from the Farm

    -Specialist Fruit Grower of the Year – G&G Sinclair/West Craigie Farm

    -Best New Variety, Herbaceous Perennials – Genesis Plant Marketing

    -Best New Variety: Vegetable/Salad – Agrico UK

    -Young Grower of the Year, sponsored by NFU – Andrew Tumilty, Sunnyfields

    -Nursery Stock Grower of the Year – Majestic Trees

    -Protected Ornamental Grower of the Year – Neame Lea Nursery

    -Soft Fruit Grower of the Year, sponsored by Cocogreen – Place UK

    -Business Innvoation – RentaHedge

    -Grower of the Year: Viticulture – Ridgeview Wine Estate

    -Vegetable Grower of the Year – South Devon Organic Producers

    -Salad Grower of the Year, sponsored by Rijk Zwaan – Valley Grown Salads

    -Best Professional Product or Service – XL Horticulture

    -High commendations went to Ceres PR for Vitacress, and Farplants Group.

    The awards were judged by an independent panel of judges including Joanna Wood, Andrew Tinsley, John Adlam, John Guest, Neville Stein, Sally Drury and Andy Richardson.

    Source: HorticultureWeek