By Ann Evans
If you’re ever looking for inspiration for your garden, Ann Evans suggests not to miss the RHS Malvern Spring Festival. It promises to be spectacular event.
The wonderful RHS Malvern Spring Festival takes place at the Three Counties Showground in Malvern, from 10th – 13th May and it’s taking its inspiration for this year’s show from The Great Exhibition of 1851 – bringing it into 21st century living.
More than 100,000 people are expected to flock to the Three Counties Showground in Malvern over the hugely popular four-day event. Making a welcome return to RHS Malvern Spring Festival is the godfather of gardening, Alan Titchmarsh, with other leading horticultural experts alongside fab foodies in the shape of Masterchef Judge, John Torode and TV chef Valentine Warner.
Diana Walton, Head of RHS Malvern Spring Festival, said: “We can’t wait to welcome our visitors to what promises to be one of our very best shows yet. We have packed in lots of exciting new features alongside our hugely popular regular line up. It’s going to be unforgettable with something for everyone to enjoy – gardeners of all levels of enthusiasm, food fans and families too.
“We’re channelling the spirit of the Great Exhibition with plenty of innovation, education and a spectacular day out. There’ll be so much for visitors to explore. We’re also linking into the ambition of the Great Exhibition and hoping that just as its influence lived on long after the event, our visitors will have such a memorable day it will leave a lasting impression for many years to come.”
The town of Malvern was put into the global spotlight back in 1851 when its prized waters formed the Great Exhibition centrepiece. At the opening ceremony, led by Queen Victoria, its waters cascaded through a magnificent 26ft crystal Schweppes fountain.
Diana added: “We’ll certainly have our own striking features to admire. We’ve introduced lots of fresh aspects to surprise and delight such as Giant Terrariums and The Great Pavilion of Art & Flowers, as well as our brand new garden feature, Green Living Spaces. We believe that we showcase the very best in gardening, food and lifestyle, from our inspiring show gardens and award-winning nurseries to fabulous food from inspirational chefs and lots of family fun, we know our 2018 festival is going to be magnificent.”
The show features inspirational show gardens brimming with wonderful new flowers and plants. There’s the opportunity to seek advice and information on everything to do with growing and gardening, and of course lots of shopping opportunities!
A host of famous gardening celebrities will be around for the show on different days, check the website to see when your favourite will be there. They include: Alan Titchmarsh, Carol Klein, John Torode, Valentine Warner, Mark Diacono, Valerie Singleton, Joe Swift, Alys Fowler and Chris Beardshaw.
In the Great Pavilion of Art and Flowers, visitors will find 2,600sqm of exquisite flowers and beautiful works of art. And one of the special features will be three stunning giant six-metre terrariums, created by internationally acclaimed landscape designer Paul Hervey-Brookes.
The Grow and Know section will centre around an Eco Marquee with talks on sustainable gardening, demonstrations and interactive art all around the theme of community and growing food. Eco landscape designer, Hannah Genders returns to curate even more inspiring projects as part of this newly enhanced area.
She said: “I’ve had the privilege of creating a number of show gardens over the years and this was the best thing I’ve ever done at a show. I’m back in 2018 with a bigger and better space and more stories to inspire. I can’t wait!”
A world first will be proudly displayed in the form of a special knitted garden. Crafted by widow Clare Young and a team of knitters from across the globe, the heartfelt Work of Heart garden, will stand in memory of her late husband Ken and raise money for Sue Ryder Leckhampton hospice.
Visitors can look out for the special ‘Celebrating Blue Peter’ garden, marking 60 years of the popular children’s show. There’s also 12 creative school gardens from youngsters showcasing the theme of what they think makes Britain so Great.
RHS Malvern Spring Festival, takes place from Thursday 10 May until Sunday 13 May. Free entry for children under the age of 16 is available throughout the festival. For more information on ticket prices, please call 0844 811 0050 or visit www.rhsmalvern.co.uk.