Honours for proud East Fife Mail villages

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Everything’s coming up roses for three local communities which have scored a hat-trick for civic pride in the annual Beautiful Scotland awards.

Kilconquhar and St Monans might have been entered in the “wee village” category but both are blooming with big successes, with the former being named as the top Wee Village in Scotland and the latter lifting the Coastal Village Trophy.

Meanwhile, the ongoing regeneration work in West Wemyss, also competing in the same class, has been given a boost with the colourful efforts of the West Wemyss Bloomers group catching the judges’ eyes and picking up a silver medal.

The Beautiful Scotland competition is run by the charity Keep Scotland Beautiful in partnership with the Royal Horticultural Society.

Entrants are judged on their year-round horticultural achievement, environmental responsibility and community participation.

Nancy McVean, secretary of the Beautiful Kilconquhar group, which was formed in 2009, said members were delighted at the result, which saw the village retain its trophy. New developments over the last year had been the creation of a quiet garden by the edge of the loch and the planting of fruit, vegetables and herbs in communal areas.

“We are also very grateful to all the villagers because everyone makes such an effort,” Nancy added.

Winning the Coastal Village Trophy reflects the hard work of members of Beautiful St Monans plus wider involvement across the community.

Win Brown, lead person in the group, said the judges had been very impressed with how it was nurturing gardeners of the future by working closely with the school and young people.

It is only the second year of entering the competition and other highlights which secured the prize were the Serenity Garden and Welly Garden, which now has around 200 pairs of welly boots acting as colourful planters.

At the time of going to press, all three villages were waiting to see if their success would be repeated in the Beautiful Fife competition, the results of which were to be announced last night (Tuesday).

In all, 16 communities in Fife entered the Beautiful Scotland contest, the highest number from any local authority area in Scotland.

Lord Purvis, Ambassador for Keep Scotland Beautiful, speaking at the award ceremony last Friday, congratulated the all the participants for helping to make Fife and Scotland a cleaner, greener place through floral enhancement, community participation and tackling littering and dog fouling.