PHOTO CALL: 15:45 on Wednesday 8 July – East Midlands in Bloom judge and representatives of the Nottingham BID at the hat sculpture, Bridlesmith Gate, Nottingham.

The Nottingham Business Improvement District’s (BID’s) floral trail and Sweeper sculptures, both joint initiatives with Nottingham City Council, will be among the sights seen by the judge of the ‘BIDs in Bloom’ category of the annual East Midlands in Bloom competition.

Doug Stacey of East Midlands in Bloom will visit the city next week to assess the BID area of the city centre for horticultural achievement, environmental responsibility and community participation.

The two-hour tour will give him the opportunity to see many of the 15 wicker sculptures in this summer’s floral trail, which has been a popular part of the city’s summer landscape for the past four years. Its aim is to help make Nottingham as attractive a place as possible during the summer months and engage with passers-by.  Each sculpture represents a different item that can be bought in the city centre or an item which shows how people can enjoy themselves in Nottingham.

He will also see the Sweepers, giant topiary-like sculptures that are new this Summer and have been installed in the Old Market Square. They depict a grandmother and grandson sweeping with the figure of the grandmother standing 3.2m tall (10ft 6ins) and her grandson 1.5m (5ft). They are made of timber and metal, dressed with wire mesh and artificial topiary matting and are lit at night.

The judge will also have the opportunity to see the floral displays created through the Articulture initiative in the Creative Quarter and by individual businesses as well as city centre displays provided by Nottingham City Council.

“Our aim is to make Nottingham city centre the shopping and leisure destination of choice in the Midlands and beyond and initiatives like this which improve the cityscape and enhance the environment have a role to play in this,” said Neil Fincham, a director of the Nottingham BID, a business-led organisation that organises a wide range of activities and initiatives for the benefit of its members – retail and leisure businesses in the city centre. “We look forward to welcoming Doug Stacey to the city.”

Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure, Culture and Tourism, said: “We are proud to showcase all the work done by the City Council, the BID and their partners to ensure that Nottingham city centre is a fantastic place to live, work, visit and shop. Nottingham is officially the cleanest city in Britain and the floral enhancements add an extra special touch over the summer months. Thank you to everyone for their efforts.”

The aim of the East Midlands in Bloom competition is to encourage the improvement of surroundings through the imaginative use of trees, shrubs, flowers and landscaping and to encourage a litter free, sustainable environment.  About 60 communities across the region will be competing this year.