Steel plant is bloomin' marvellous

Published: 20 September 2011

Sheffield Forgemasters is celebrating another award win this time for its flower power.

Sheffield Forgemasters picked up the silver gilt award in the Business Premises category of the Yorkshire in Bloom competition.

The accolade follows the bronze award the company won last year despite massive flood damage which destroyed months of landscaping and planting.

The company has planted more than 20,000 sq ft of native British trees, shrubs and plants along with more exotic varieties to brighten its 64 acre Brightside Lane site and encourage more wildlife to the area.

One of the centrepieces of Sheffield Forgemasters horticultural efforts is a roundabout at Gate 2 on Brightside Lane, which has been planted to replicate the company's distinctive logo.

Additional to the ornate flower borders, Sheffield Forgemasters is working in conjunction with Sheffield Wildlife Trust to establish a one-acre section of wildlife habitat on a currently disused section of the site, which will include landscaped and turfed areas, water features, native trees, grasses and shrubs, complete with pathways and seating areas.

Sheffield Forgemasters' dedication to preserving green areas and encouraging biodiversity has been reinforced by becoming a corporate member of the Sheffield Wildlife Trust.

Dave Green, group environment director at Sheffield Forgemasters, said: "We are absolutely delighted to win a Yorkshire in Bloom award for the second year running and to receive the silver gilt is testament to the hard work and vision of everyone who has been involved.

"The recovery across the site following last year's floods has been remarkable and the planting scheme we have in place has helped create an even brighter site this year. With the new wildlife habitat in place we can continue the company's commitment to the environment and hopefully win a different coloured award next year!"

Judges were particularly impressed by the quality of the bedding plants, permanent landscaping, design of the landscaped areas, overall standard of maintenance, pond and water feature and contribution from employees.

A statement from Yorkshire in Bloom said: "The imagination and enthusiasm demonstrated in greening up and improving this vast industrial site is outstanding. The recovery for last year's floods, when areas were covered in five feet of water and silt is remarkable and it must be very rewarding to see areas of the permanent planting maturing very successfully."

Yorkshire in Bloom is the voluntary regional organisation that administers the Britain in Bloom competition in North, South, East and West Yorkshire, North and North-East Lincolnshire.