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St Gregory’s Green Fingered Pupils Win Top RHS Prize in National Competition

A team of 13-15 year olds from St Gregory’s Catholic Science College has won the RHS School Gardening Team of the Year Award. 

Pupils designed and built an outdoor learning environment on a patch of land originally earmarked for a staff car park extension. For many of the school’s pupils the garden serves as their main connection with nature, inspiring lessons across the curriculum and campaigns to raise awareness of environmental issues such as reducing plastic use. Organic crops are also grown and the team maintains a large community flower bed at the entrance to the local park.

Frances Tophill, BBC Gardeners’ World presenter and judge said: “This year’s winners prove the appeal of gardening for teens - whether it’s to boost wellbeing, learn valuable life skills or open up career opportunities such as paving the way for tomorrow’s conservationists. The determination, vision and hard work they’ve shown is nothing short of miraculous.”

Alana Cama, RHS Skills Development Manager said: “Often, the pressure of exams and grades means fewer students over the age of 12 spending time in the garden. It just shows that with a little perseverance, groups like St Gregory’s can reap the benefits of the outdoors.”

Andrew Prindiville, Headteacher, said, “This is a fantastic achievement.  We are very proud of our amazing pupils.  This award is also recognition of St Gregory’s determination to bring the curriculum to life through innovative teaching and to encourage pupils to strive for the best in everything they do, making a positive impact on the world around them.”

RHS School Gardeners of the Year 2018 is supported by greenhouse manufacturer Gabriel Ash and the company has donated a cedar greenhouse to the winning School Gardening Team of the Year.