The Welcome to Yorkshire garden at RHS Chelsea Flower Show has received a highly coveted Gold Medal - a fitting celebration as the tourism organisation celebrates its 10th anniversary and 10th garden at the world-famous flower show.
The garden is inspired by Yorkshire’s proud industrial heritage and stunning natural environment with the aim of encouraging more people to visit and experience the county’s beauty first hand.
Designed by Mark Gregory from Landform Consultants, the highlight of the design is an authentically built canal with flowing water and genuine lock gates. The garden also includes a towpath and a lock keeper’s lodge with a colourful garden and vegetable patch.
The lock gates, which were removed from right outside Huddersfield University on the Huddersfield narrow canal after reaching the end of their working life were gifted to Welcome to Yorkshire by the waterways and wellbeing charity Canal & River Trust. A team from the charity spent weeks working on them to ensure they were a perfect fit for the garden.
Welcome to Yorkshire’s Commercial Director Peter Dodd said: “We were blown away when we saw the garden and it looks like the judges were too. The reaction so far has been incredible, and this is exactly why we’ve been coming to RHS Chelsea for the last 10 years, to open people’s eyes to the beauty of Yorkshire.
“After a record success last year, Mark said he would up his game even further in 2019 and he totally has. This has been the most demanding design we’ve ever under taken and I know the build presented some complex challenges to Mark at some points, but he’s truly knocked it out of the park.
“The whole, process of producing this garden from start to finish is a huge group effort and I couldn’t be prouder; a Gold Medal for a gold standard team!”
Speaking of the medal, Landform Consultants Managing Director, Mark Gregory said: “Each year you strive to build on the success of the previous, which after last year was no mean feat! We’re over the moon that the Welcome to Yorkshire garden has been recognised once again and couldn’t be more pleased with the result. Chelsea is always a team effort, and we’ve got a winning team, I couldn’t be prouder.”
Affectionately named the ‘Construction King of Chelsea’, Mark Gregory has built a grand total of 99 Chelsea show gardens and spent almost four years of his life on the grounds of Royal Hospital. Mark founded Landform on 1st April 1988 and the very next day was called on to create a last-minute Chelsea garden and he’s been back every single year since. Landform holds more than 20 Gold medals, alongside Mark’s five personal Gold medals.
Sean McGinley, Director of Yorkshire & NE for Canal & River Trust added: “Our huge congratulations to Welcome to Yorkshire and Mark Gregory. His attention to detail and passion is phenomenal. Our charity is proud to have helped support the garden with gifted genuine lock gates from Huddersfield Narrow Canal, adapted at our Stanley Ferry workshop in Yorkshire and equipment typically found in a lock keepers lodge. We hope this wonderful achievement will inspire visits to Yorkshire and encourage even more people taking time out to discover their local waterways, which can help improve our health, wellbeing and happiness.”
Over the coming days crowds in their thousands will flock to the grounds of Royal Hospital to see the Welcome to Yorkshire garden – a highlight of RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019.
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