For years I attended the Mottram show to see the exhibitions and try to work up the courage to take part myself, which I finally did last year.
To my surprise I actually managed to win the best newcomer prize on my first attempt, something which I am still incredibly proud of.
So when I found out that Milbrook Primary School had been invited to take part in the prestigious Tatton Flower Show, I was thrilled for them.
I have very fond memories of helping my grandad in his garden as a young boy and since then I have always enjoyed the satisfaction you can get from gardening.
Planting something and watching it grow can be extremely gratifying, and there are few things I enjoy more after a busy week than coming home and taking the kids in the garden to check up on my runner beans.
The children at Milbrook have been taking part in the Royal Horticultural Society’s Campaign for School Gardening, which has involved them learning how to construct and maintain their own gardens, something they have taken to with visible enthusiasm.
Being given the opportunity to show what they have learnt at one of the biggest horticultural shows in the country is a huge accomplishment.
I attended the show last Wednesday as a guest of the school to see their work in person. Organisers had asked to use them as an example of the benefits that outdoor learning can bring, so it was lovely to see them getting so much positive attention.
Whilst I was there I also bumped into a group of pupils Dowson Primary School from Hyde, who were taking part in the competition with an Egyptian themed garden, and a team from New Charter Housing - who won a silver medal in a separate category - so there was a large Tameside presence at the event.
I hope that these local success stories will encourage other people to take an interest too.
It would be excellent if your local schools became a regular feature at the show. Who know, maybe after another year of practice my runner beans might be good enough to warrant a display there too!