HARD-WORKING volunteers are putting the finishing touches to Haddington’s horticultural beauty spots before judges arrive at the end of the week.

Members of Blooming Haddington have been working hard throughout the year to ensure the town is awash with colour.

Two judges from Britain in Bloom visit the town on Friday (August 9) to cast their expert eye.

Laura Samuel, chairwoman of the green-fingered group, was nervously looking ahead to the visit.

She said: “I think because we are in the British version [of the competition] there is a certain amount of nervousness. We don’t want to sound as if we don’t know what we are doing!

“It is our second time in it so we know what is involved but it is new judges and they are looking for different things. Hopefully, it will be all right on the night.”

Blooming Haddington, made up entirely of hard-working volunteers, has enjoyed great success since it was formed in 2013.

The group has scooped prizes on an annual basis at the Keep Scotland Beautiful awards, which were hosted in Haddington 12 months ago.

Last year, Blooming Haddington won a gold medal and the Best Medium Town Category, which gained them qualification to the British awards.

The group’s chairwoman said the stakes were even higher this time around. She said: “This year, we are in with different parts of the country.

“Down south, they get a lot more heat and their plants grow a lot differently to what they do up here.

“It is slightly different but it is not just about horticulture but environment and community participation.”

Kim Parish, from Devon, will be joined by Mel Henley, in touring the town. Already, 180 hanging baskets have been put on display in the town centre, with patio boxes and three-tier planters also helping to add a splash of colour.

Members will greet their visitors at the John Gray Centre at 9am.

The judges and the touring party will then leave the Lodge Street venue before a tour of the town.

With the countdown officially on for the judges’ visit, a rigorous volunteering programme is being planned in a bid to ensure Haddington’s greenery is rewarded with gold at the national awards ceremony, which takes place in Royal Horticultural Society Halls, in London’s Vincent Square, on October 25.