Third place award for Writtle’s Ideal Young Gardeners of the Year

March 2011

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(NOTE: This is an archived press release.)

During an official ceremony held on Thursday 17 March, at Earls Court in London, the Prince of Wales awarded a team of Level 3 horticulture students with third place in the Ideal Young Gardeners of the Year Award.

Prince Charles visited the Writtle College garden and spoke enthusiastically to the students who alongside their Lecturers, Ben Wincott and Simon Watkins, had designed and built a unique sustainable garden.

The Writtle College garden was debated at length by the judges, Adam Hunt one of the judges said it was the garden “most of them wanted to take home”.

Lecturer Simon Watkins said: "I am incredibly proud of the work the students have done, they even helped on the Princes House after they completed the college garden, gaining high praise from experienced contractors and event organiser David Domoney'

On building the ideal home young gardener garden student, Stacey Elliot remarked that it was " a once in a lifetime experience I'll never forget”.

Alex Maguire-Smith 'it has been a surreal event that has given me great experiences and great opportunities for contacts, speaking to Prince Charles topped the whole experience off'.

The garden and the title were inspired by a student cliché - ‘LNP’ last night’s pizza! Ben Wincott, Lecturer in Horticulture, described some of the elements to the garden in more detail: “We created a garden which many of us could only dream of having in this busy and hectic time in society. The low maintenance planting offers structure and interest throughout most of the year. To compliment and to give the garden its namesake we designed a special pizza oven, which was cut from stone provided by an Essex supplier - Global Stone.”

The garden was designed and constructed as part of a competition, partly funded by the Prince of Wales’s Foundation for the Built Environment. For the first year the Prince’s Foundation with the Ideal Home Show have developed an exciting partnership to help Britain promote and build better neighborhoods and communities. In total eight horticultural Colleges’ from around the country were invited to take part in the competition their ‘organic and sustainable’ gardens will be on display at the Ideal Home Show until Sunday 27th March.

The College secured additional funding for the garden from Globalstone - an Essex based supplier of natural paving stone – who the College has close links with as suppliers of horticultural teaching products.

To find out further information about the Prince’s Foundation and the Ideal Home Show collaboration, please visit

Pictured: Prince Charles talking to the students about the garden and their time on placement.