NEIGHBOURS are taking part in a nationwide gardening competition to bring their community together and encourage people to take pride in their patch.

Peter Welsh, along with his neighbour and friend Stu Olden has been working for months to enter Tadpole Garden Village in the national RHS Britain in Bloom competition.

He said: “It is the first time that Tadpole Garden Village has been entered in the competition.

“We initially registered with the RHS about eight months ago, and with Stu it took us a few weeks to sort of get prepared, but we didn’t know what to expect.

“It’s a national competition and they are trying to get people out, encouraging them to look after where they live and also introducing them to gardening and wildlife in the local area.”

Peter, who moved to Swindon two years ago, hopes the initiative will grow in so people living on the estate can tackle issues such as litter picking.

The 36-year-old added: “We are also going to grow vegetables now, that we are going to distribute to the village. It is just about brightening up the village. It’s important for the area and the community, because it will encourage people to respect local places.

“For me it is just seeing your hard work and effort rewarded by seeing the area blooming, it’s really nice. And it’s not just about gardening, it’s about getting everyone involved.”

As part of the competition, Peter and Stu had to produce a presentation about the area and what they are doing to promote and improve it.

“We’ve been judged in August and had the judges up here. We’ve had our assessment and are waiting for the results. We are hoping to get them next week and we would love to achieve gold,” said Peter.

The two friends have proposed a set of ideas to the judges to improve the area including a gardening club, a communal garden, street competitions and seasonal events.

He said: “We are going to start our first community event in a month time, which is going be a litter picking session.”

The pair's efforts have already won them support from their neighbours.

The dad of a ten-week old baby said: “We are really happy with the amount of feedback we’ve had from the community, and we are now hoping to achieve a lot more may be next year.

“A lot of people are now interested in getting involved, we’ve had a lot of people asking if they bring their kids along.

“Stu and I started it off and now we’ve got a Facebook group of nearly 80 people.”