Forth group overcomes adversity to flourish with a national award
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Hosted by environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful, the ceremony – held in person for the first time since 2019 – took place at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh on Friday.
Forty-five groups were presented with awards and Certificates of Recognition for their efforts.
In addition to the RHS award, Flourishing Forth also received a Silver Gilt certificate for large villages in the judged category.
An awards spokeswoman said: “The local allotment is used for community groups and food banks. The group members also grow flowers for their hanging baskets and barrels that help brighten up the village streets.
“Members’ efforts were recognised with the Beautiful Scotland discretionary award, the RHS Scotland Award for Overcoming Adversity.
“Being a resident in Forth brings many challenges, not least due to an exposed location and perceived lack of facilities. However, Flourishing Forth and its partners seek to address these.
“The Eco-Hub is a pivotal response to changing community circumstances. Regular deliveries to the local food bank and providers enable people to access fresh fruit and vegetables.
“Organisations like the resource centre and church provide warm spaces and soup made from this produce.
“The Eco-Hub is completely off grid and the group has accepted this adversity challenge with gusto! They’ve installed solar panels, battery storage and rainwater harvesting to support an extensive irrigation system. This latter addition has proved invaluable during recent episodes of water scarcity.”
In 2022, the group won the Jim Murdie Award for Sustainability for its eco hub. It is one of the key strengths of the Flourishing Forth Group, where community food growing is a primary function in its 32 raised beds and polytunnels. A variety of fruits are also produced in the orchard.
Juliette Camburn, Keep Scotland Beautiful community initiatives senior officer, added: “The efforts of our groups is truly inspiring, ensuring their areas are not only protected but improved for future generations.”