IT CAME as a big surprise to pub landlord Alan Jones when he won a first prize for his hanging baskets. Not because he did not think the displays outside his pub were not good enough, he did not even know he was in a competition.

The flowers outside the Prince of Wales won first prize in the pub/wine bar/restaurant category of this year's Bexley in Bloom competition.

Barmaid Helen West, 24, who has worked in the pub in Woolwich Road for about four years, was so impressed with the colourful baskets, she decided to enter. He thought everyone was having him on when they told him Helen had entered the pub in the competition until he won the trophy and £50.