Gardening for the community

Part of the show will live on long after it closes when one of its central attractions is re-invented as a city community area.

Community Street garden by Nigel DunnettPrestigious shows such as the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show can play a powerful role in raising awareness of the importance of gardening for communities, the environment and urban regeneration.

That is why this year's show, celebrating its 25th anniversary, displayed an exciting central RHS Community Street feature, the materials from which will literally be used to transform a derelict part of Bristol after the show closes.

This feature, modelled on a real-life road in Bristol, was designed to help breath new life into the rundown street, transforming it into a smart area of which its residents can be proud.

The transformation is a prize won by the Bristol community. Last year, a competition was run asking communities to nominate local urban areas that needed a facelift, and 13 were chosen as finalists, with Bristol taking the top prize. The project was supported by designer Nigel Dunnett, who has created numerous Show Gardens for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, and Landform. The life-sized terraced street and church were all designed to show how city streets can blossom with life and colour.

Small tasks, big impact

Community Street was located within a larger RHS Hub area in the Inspire zone. It also had a village green with a bandstand, food stalls and an activity area themed around Alice in Wonderland, where visitors could see demonstrations on how to sow seed and take cuttings.

The popular Scarecrow Competition had a giant scarecrow, a scarecrow trail to lead visitors on a family-friendly journey around the showground, and an area for Gardeners' Question Time.

"By making gardening relevant to children and families, we wanted to show that a little gardening knowledge can create a huge impact," said Show manager Dave Green.

"The beauty of the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show is that we have the space to create impressive Show Features, and the RHS Hub was just one of them."

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The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.