A group of allotments in Banstead have been named the best in Surrey for wildlife.

The recognition was given by Surrey Wildlife Trust (SWT), who announced the winners of their annual Wildlife Garden of the Year awards yesterday (September 25).

Partidge Mead Allotments in Banstead was named the best allotment in Surrey for wildlife by judges from SWT.

Among its many achievements, SWT noted cited the planting of hundreds of new trees, a new pond and the abundance of creature-friendly features such as bird and insect boxes as being particularly impressive.

Surrey Comet: Flip at Partridge Mead AllotmentsFlip at Partridge Mead Allotments

Flip, one of the chief gardeners on the allotment, came in for special praise for his highly ethical approach to gardening.

"It really was a delight to meet Flip the volunteer steward, who is an absolute asset to the allotment which has 17 plots," said Victoria Pinder, wildlife gardening champion at SWT.

"Everything is reused and recycled and made by Flip. He encourages the community and tenants to get involved and help on the site, all tenants are encouraged to compost and use water butts.

"He also worked with a local housing trust to transfer the water from their garage block guttering to water butts for the tenants to use," she added.

Flip also keeps bees — one of the most important species for the health of ecosystems in the UK — and currently tends to six active hives in the area.

Meanwhile, vehicle glass company Belron International, who are based in Egham, won the top prize in the corporate garden category.

"It was a pleasure to walk around Belron’s grounds and spot woodpeckers, nuthatches, jays and magpies among other insects and bees.

"They have also introduced a poly tunnel for growing tomatoes and chillis and encourage staff to enjoy the ponds and gardens at weekends with their families too," Ms Pinder said.

Staff at the Egham-based company were reportedly thrilled that their much-loved garden had come in for the recognition.

Surrey Comet: Belron International wildlife garden in EghamBelron International wildlife garden in Egham

"We're delighted to have won this award. We believe that making the most of our outdoor space is important for not only the wildlife and conservation of the natural habitats but also the well-being of our people," Belron International's Alex Lacurto said.

"We try to make the most of it with everything from outdoor meetings to fitness activities.

"Everyone really enjoys the grounds and we feel very lucky to be surrounded by all of this wonderful nature," he added.