Hopton Best Kept Village Working Group

pole

Hopton is a quiet village of some 140 dwellings which has a long history of being involved with the County-wide best kept village annual competition organised by the Community Council of Staffordshire. We have in fact enjoyed great success since the start of the competition in the early 1980’s with numerous wins as ‘best small village’ and several times being awarded the ‘Rubery Owen Holdings’ area trophy, which we were very pleased to accept again in 2016 and proudly display the trophy on our village green at the time of writing.

Many individuals have been involved with work toward the Hopton best kept village effort over the past years and the current working group of around 12 residents was formed at the beginning of October 2013. We normally gather on the village green every Wednesday morning and go on to tackle whichever task requires attention in addition to the usual tidying up and litter picking. Those areas needing most work are naturally the three most important areas being the village hall, the village green and the memorial garden. The main aim and requirement of the best kept village competition is to encourage community spirit and to stimulate pride in the village. We would like to think that we address both aims but would dearly welcome more involvement from the village.

In order to maintain or hopefully improve the planted areas some difficult decisions always have to be made concerning pruning and removal of overgrown and diseased trees/shrubs, which it has got to be said can sometimes give rise to the odd adverse comment, but although we can never please everybody the greater majority of residents happily volunteer their approval.

A modest annual donation from Hopton and Coton Parish Council is very welcome and is used to purchase new plants and is supplemented by additional material from working group members. A considerable human effort is necessary from working group members each year to achieve our aim typically involving several hundred man hours of labour and countless visits to the recycling centre!

The work has not all been about plants as hopefully you will notice that the village benches, litter bin carriers and plant tubs are kept freshly painted and maintained. Informative village map boards and noticeboards are on display at the village hall, village green and Mount Edge to help with navigating around our village and locating the notable features.

Best Kept Village Group

Memorial Park

The most significant recent project has been the creation of the Hopton memorial garden in an area formerly known as the ‘cattle pound’ from historic times, from where a spectacular view towards Beacon Hill and Stafford can be enjoyed. The project was sponsored by the Staffordshire County Council community funding scheme following an application to our local Councillor, Len Bloomer. The funds were used to purchase a bench, constructed from local Sandon Park oak, and also plants for the garden surrounds. The clearing and planting work was carried out by our working group as well as installing a descriptive plaque and has been tastefully planted with appropriate varieties, and bordered by a post and rope boundary with stepped access from Hopton Lane.

In 2016 we re-created a rose bed on the village green, formerly covered in over-grown conifers. So pause a while in your stroll through Hopton, enjoying the scents of the roses in summer and rest on the refurbished bench nearby.

New Heading Text