The Garden Centre Association competition is designed to reward industry excellence in the display, quality and customer service of plants in garden centres nationwide.
Director Martin Cowell said:
"We received a spot visit by the GCA auditors in spring 2010 and recorded one of the top scores in the country, which saw us awarded best garden centre in the North East. The centre then received a further spot check, along with four other centres, which resulted resulted in the UK’s highest result and presentation of the prestigious industry award.
Alan Cowell the founder of Cowell’s Garden Centre said:
"We are extremely proud to have won the national Ruxley Rose competition and to once again be awarded the Garden Centre of Excellence was amazing. To then go on to win the overall GCA Garden Centre of the Year award is truly unbelievable. I am so proud for the family and the staff and it is great to see all of our hard work over the past 30 years being recognised."
Martin Cowell "It is great to see that independent garden centres such as ourselves can still compete with and beat the larger centres. To us, the quality of our plants and service are a matter of pride and it’s great that our passion has paid off.
"We are already looking forward to 2011 and this has given us all the boost we need to hopefully get even better.
Meanwhile, Solus Garden & Leisure, the supplier and manufacturer of garden and leisure products, has been awarded the Haskins Stewart Cup at this year’s Garden Centre Association Awards.
The prize is awarded to the Associate GCA member of the year, and voted for by members of the GCA.
Solus MD Nick Davies, who received the award from Martin Stewart of Stewarts Garden Centres and Warren Haskins from Haskins Garden Centres, said:
"We’re incredibly honoured to be awarded the Haskins Stewarts Cup. Being recognised by the customers we serve is really exciting, and proves that the hard work undertaken by everyone at Solus over the past 12 months has been worth it.
"I’m extremely proud of the whole team, because no matter what they have had to face – extreme weather or tough economic climates – they have helped drive the business forward, leaving us in a great position to grow even further long into the future. On behalf of myself and everyone at Solus we’d like to thank the GCA for this award."