'Moonlight serenades' made flowers bloom!
THESE beautiful blooms are the result of a unique package of care ... midnight serenades from the local postmaster!
New Waltham Post Office has taken a top award in the village's In Bloom competition – for the fifth year in a row.
And owner Bob Wainwright puts the secret of his success down to going out at midnight and singing to his plants – although the Telegraph has a feeling his tip may be a little tongue-in-cheek!
He pipped the village's Purple Rose florist, which was awarded runner-up, and is now the proud owner of the Best Business Premises title five times over.
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Bob said: "This is five years on the trot, so we are very pleased.
"There is a lot of work goes into the baskets. They are greatly admired by customers.
"They keep asking me what the secret is. I just tell them that I go out every night at midnight and sing to them."
Roger Breed, chairman of New Waltham Parish Council, which organises the competition, said he was disappointed there had only be a dozen entries in this year's competition.
He said: "We are very grateful to the people who did enter. There was a low entry because of the indifferent weather.
"One or two people expressed disappointment about how things had turned out or hand not bloomed, due to the weather.
"We try to keep the competition going. We normally get double the number we had."
The chairman said he was particularly saddened neither of the village's pubs, The Harvest Moon and The Farmhouse, had not entered.
Councillor Breed continued: "They don't seem to bother now. I wish other businesses did more to enhance the look of the village. I hope next year will be a lot better."
He said the judges, Paul Aitken and Don Wiseman, were particularly impressed with the allotments in Anningson Lane and singled out Eddie Harvey for his spectacular plot.
Bill Parrott was praised for his Best Kept Garden and Best Window Boxes at his home in Station Road.
He also gained a runner-up award for the Best Decorative Garden, which was won by Mrs M Turner.