Clovelly has been awarded gold in the RHS Britain in Bloom awards.

The coastal village was the only North Devon winner in the national competition.

The Hon. John Rous, owner of Clovelly, travelled to Belfast with members of the Clovelly in Bloom gardening team for the prestigious ceremony.

Su Maddocks, who leads the Clovelly in Bloom project; Lucy Halliday, head gardener at Clovelly Court Gardens, and Clovelly resident Ellie Jarvis were overwhelmed when it was announced that Clovelly had been awarded gold at national level.

RHS judges commented in their feedback to the group that it was impressive to have achieved gold in their first entry at national level.

This comes after battling to keep blooms alive in the extreme weather, during what the RHS describes as the toughest year for community gardening in 54 years.

BBC television presenter Chris Bavin presented the award.

Ellie said: “This was a particularly special moment, as Chris had spent the summer filming with the group in Clovelly as they prepared for judging. The show is expected to air in the spring.”

RHS Britain in Bloom is the largest horticultural and community gardening campaign in Europe.

Groups are assessed for their achievements in three core areas: Horticultural Excellence, Environmental Responsibility and Community Participation.

Over 1,600 communities around the UK enter In Bloom each year. Initially participating in their local campaign, from these regional competitions this year there were 74 groups selected to enter the National Finals of RHS Britain in Bloom.