HMP Wymott, a Category C prison near Leyland, Lancashire UK, has won the coveted RHS Windlesham Trophy for Best Prison Garden from 5 high-quality finalists.
Fifty of HMP Wymott’s prisoners work in the Prison’s gardens, creating a a range of well-designed and maintained feature gardens, both edible and ornamental.
Lead Royal Horticultural Society judge Robert Haslam commented:
“The prisoners displayed good horticultural awareness and skills in commercial and protected cropping, in addition to the ornamental areas. The ethos and enthusiasm engendered by the land based activities managers was clearly evident with the engagement of prisoners in a creative and constructive manner demonstrating focus, pride and interest in their endeavours.”
Horticulture is an excellent knowledge- and skills-based activity for prisoners, encouraging many to obtain industry-recognised qualifications. Horticultural therapy is also well-documented to increase a sense of worth, of community and of connectedness.
Acting Governor of HMP Wymott Nicki Smith added:
“The award reflects a lot of hard work by our staff and prisoners. We are committed to having a well-presented site, which creates a positive backdrop for all the work we do, and horticulture is a key part of this.”