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New Chris Beardshaw Mentoring Scholar announced- sponsored by Bradstone

May 2010

Maria Luisa Medina, an up and coming landscape and garden designer from Kent, has been awarded the coveted Chris Beardshaw Mentoring Scholarship (CBMS) 2010 at this year’s Malvern Spring Gardening Show (6th-9th May).

Using a range of Bradstone products including Natural Slate, Maria competed against six other shortlisted candidates to secure her place on the 12 month experiential garden design mentorship which is sponsored by Bradstone, Aggregate Industries garden hard landscaping product range, and supported by the Malvern Spring Gardening Show.

The unique industry accolade is open to amateur, trainee and semi-professional landscape designers, and the candidates came from a range of professional backgrounds. Maria will begin her scholarship immediately by spending a day with the current scholar Paul Hervey-Brookes as he strives to create his Bradstone Biodiversity Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. She will then spend the next year working alongside award winning garden designer and broadcaster Chris Beardshaw, receiving invaluable business advice and technical support from Bradstone and gaining work experience with nurseries and design contractors.

Chris Beardshaw said: “The CBMS is about nurturing the horticultural design potential of today into the talented, leading designers of tomorrow. All of the shortlisted candidates displaying their talent at the show have benefitted from a huge amount of support from the CBMS team right from the initial application process through to their finished gardens. “We are proud to nurture all these fledging designers and see them go on to develop their careers. In fact, many of the first and second year candidates are back at Malvern this year in their own right.

“We were highly impressed with all of the candidates’ garden designs and the innovative ways in which they interpreted this year’s theme of ‘Circus’. It is always difficult to choose just one person to receive the scholarship but we award it to the designer we believe will be able to develop their skills and benefit most from the year of support and advice we can offer through the CBMS.

“We were particularly impressed with Maria’s striking creation combined with her passion for garden design and hard work over the last six months, and look forward to working with her over the course of the next year.”

New chief executive of Aggregate Industries Alain Bourguignon said: “We are always keen to support new talent in the landscape gardening industry and champion cutting edge design, which is why the Chris Beardshaw Mentoring Scholarship is an important partnership for Bradstone. We wish to congratulate Maria on her success in being awarded the prestigious scholarship and commend all of the candidates who have worked extremely hard to get to this stage of the competition - they are all the ones to watch in the landscape gardening industry.

“We are proud to showcase our innovative and sustainable products at The Malvern Spring Gardening Show. Our range enables landscapers to transform a garden quickly and easily, as well as meeting the growing demand from customers for responsibly sourced products.”

The seven shortlisted candidates had to design and build a garden inspired by this year’s design theme of ‘Circus’ using Bradstone’s range of decorative paving and walling materials. The garden was assessed by a panel comprising Biddy Bolsover from Bradstone, Richard Webb, Council member of The Royal Horticultural Society, and Chris Beardshaw. As well as exhibiting their designs the finalists were also subjected to a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style grilling by the judges in front of a live audience.

Next year’s CBMS theme of ‘Atom’ to celebrate UNESCO’s International Year of Chemistry was exclusively revealed at the Malvern Spring Gardening Show and those keen to become the 2011 scholar are invited to apply by contacting 01684 584900 or visit the Bradstone area of the site.

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