I can still remember the letter from the Royal Horticultural Society arriving in late 2016 inviting us to exhibit in the Great Pavilion for the 2017 Chelsea Flower Show. I can not describe the excitement.
The RHS very kindly provided access to a top garden designer – Kate Gould – to help layout our stand. Following a really helpful day, the die was cast. Who’d have thought of using fake brick walls!
Aside from the usual business of growing plants, a whole new structure needed to be designed and built. Staging started earlier than usual – here’s a picture from the end of Wednesday. Erecting 6mm MDF sheet isn’t the easiest!
Next up was the more usual job of staging plants. We also entered as a Linley Exhibit which requires an educational element so we designed and built a run through of the seed sowing and cutting taking processes. In hindsight, too much content for a small space. One or the other next time.
Cutting a long story short, after a huge effort from the team – massive thanks to Ali, Joan, Jackie and the ever suffering Anne, we staged a really good exhibit. The BBC thought so and used it for Carol Klein to sit on for the Monday Night Chelsea programme.
And of course our stand, our lovely stand that won a Silver Medal. Compared to building the usual tradestand, the Great Pavilion is like going from League 2 to the World Cup. A different world. Lots of hard work and stress. Will we do it again? You bet!