Garden Media Guild Blog of the Year 2019

Please indulge me on this.  I like to think I am not a hugely boastful person and I shy away from grandstanding as a general rule.  This last week something that happened that was very exciting so I am going to talk about it.
I think I have mentioned a few times I am a proud member of the Garden Media Guild.  I am indeed a proud member, I joined a couple of years ago and I have met some of the nicest, most generous with their knowledge, people I have ever met.  We go on excellent visits to very interesting places and if you need some advice about garden writing/career then they are who are first on the list to call.  Every year there is a very grand awards ceremony.  Last year was the first time I attended and again, unlike me, I had a case of nerves.  I did not know who I would know there but I knew lots of very experienced and famous, garden writers, photographers and presenters would be there.  It is not called the Garden Media Guild for nothing!  Last year, definitely feeling like an imposter, I pretty much snuck in at the back.  I had posh frock on and walked into the Award Ceremony reception where the volume of happy chatting wrapped around me like a thick cosy blanket.  My fears were groundless, I knew quite a few people there and met lots of new people as well.

When the tickets came up for sale this year I bought one quickly.  I knew I wanted to go again, it is the perfect way to cheer up a dull November day.  A few weeks later and I found I was a finalist for the Blog of the Year Category.  This made me very happy, I mean really happy.  I have never been shortlisted for an award before and to get that far was very exciting.  I was up against strong competition.  I looked at the other names and knew (and I do mean knew) I had no chance.  So, no nerves, no trepidation, I quite happily went to the lunch to have a fab time catching up with friends and to have lovely meal.

I caught up with friends, I had a lovely meal and dessert time arrived.  I need to say it was a good dessert, it was a coffee and nut sponge and ice- cream combo and it really was delicious.

Ann-Marie Powell was on the stage announcing the awards.  The second category was Blog or Vlog of the Year Award sponsored by Mr Fothergill's.  I kept eating my dessert, it was good, I was not going to waste it.

The finalists were read out:

Life on Pig Row – Andrew Oldham
Bramble Garden – Karen Gimson
Living on One Acre or Less – Sally Morgan
Grow Like Grandad – Matt Peskett

Blackberry Garden - Alison Levey

Ann-Marie starts to say 'and the winner is....' and I prepare to shovel another forkful of dessert into my mouth....

and she said my name..... I looked up, fork mid-air, my name was in big letters on the screen.  I managed not to drop the fork, just.

As I walked, rabbit in the headlights, towards the stage, still not really sure this was happening,
Ann-Marie went on to say "The Blackberry Garden stood out for its warmth, accessibility, engaging and relevant content and sense of humour."  Words that actually, even a couple of days later as I write this, raise a tear as these words get to the heart of what it is I had hoped I was doing when writing this blog.  To have this recognised by the judges, an such an august group of judges, means a huge amount to me.

photo c/o Garden Media Guild - copyright Jayne Lloyd
Here I am, still looking gobsmacked, with David Carey, Joint Managing Director of Mr Fothergill's, who presented me with the award.  

So I am now the proud owner of this rather special award.  I need to say thank you to Mr Fothergill's for sponsoring the award.  I need to say thank you to Ann-Marie Powell for being so lovely when I met her.  I need to say thank you to the Garden Media Guild and I am beyond grateful for all the support and good wishes I have received both now and over the years from everyone who reads this blog.
At some point I will stop grinning, but not yet........

Genuinely, irrespective of all this, it was a fabulous event.  My dessert did melt before I could finish it but this was a small price to pay.

A full list of all the winners can be found here.  The final award was for Lifetime achievement and this year Carol Klein won it.  Never has an award been so truly deserved.  Roy Lancaster presented and Carol gave a small acceptance speech and to say there was not a dry eye in the house was an understatement.  We all stood, we all applauded, it was a wonderful moment.

Thank you for indulging me - normal service will now resume.....


  1. Heartfelt congratulations, well deserved!

  2. Huge congratulations - well deserved indeed, I would say! I always enjoy reading your blog posts.

  3. Many congratulations Alison! You must be over the moon.

  4. Love your blog, well deserved.

  5. Congratulations. I love your blog!

  6. I really enjoy your style of writing - informative and makes me smile too. Well done!

  7. Thank you all for the kind comments - genuinely appreciated. Xx


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