Shrewsbury Flower Show: Pictures and report as Quarry is filled with flora
As the historic show continues today, catch up on the best of the action from day one in Shrewsbury.
It was quite a 130th birthday party as thousands of people poured through the gates of the Quarry for Shrewsbury Flower Show.
Young and old were treated to spectacular floral displays, show gardens bursting with creation, and some of the finest fruit and veg they will ever set their eyes on.
The event, one of the county’s largest and most popular, has grown and expanded its range in recent years with something now on hand for people of all tastes, with music and entertainment now a huge part of of the event.
Celebrity garden designers Joe Swift and Penny Meadmore were one of the star attractions at this year’s show, with both taking part in a live gardeners question time as well as giving their own talks.
The pair were also tasked with judging the show gardens, handing the top prize to Carol Seager’s Sundance, which was created for the Shropshire Humanists.
Joe, who has been one of the main presenters of Gardener’s World, and is a regular at horticultural shows around the country, said he was hugely enjoying his first visit to the Shrewsbury event.
Penny said she was amazed at the scale of the show, considering its setting.
She said: “I cannot get over a show if this size and quality being in the middle of a town. It is amazing.”
Penny added that the atmosphere of the show was reminiscent of the best that county shows have to offer.
One of the main attractions at the show is the begonia display from the national Begonia Society.
Mike Avis, show manager for the society, said they were delighted to be part of the event – a decision taken three years ago.
He also said that it stood out against some of the larger shows as more enjoyable for people attending.
He said: “We love it here. The whole set up suits us down to the ground. Shrewsbury are happy with us and we are very happy with them.
"I have exhibited at Chelsea as a garden club and its too congested, too difficult for people to get around and see things properly but here it is lovely."
The show gardens proved as popular as ever, with local primary schools producing some stunning efforts which were commended by Joe Swift.
He said: “The schools gardens, the imaginations of those kids is just brilliant. They were really wonderful.”
There were efforts from Greenfields Primary School, Walton Hall Academy, Rushbury Primary School, and Severndale Specialist Academy, all bristling with invention and riffing off the wild west theme.
Other primary schools also got in on the act creating displays for the spectacular floral train.
Joe also had praise for the winning show garden, saying: “They really got into the theme. It had beautiful features, the detail on them and the planning.
"There were edibles, plenty of heat and colour which you need in a small space. It was really well conceived and satisfying.”
For some who have been visiting the show for many year it was just another chance for success.
Donald Wright, 82, has been attending the event since 1956, exhibiting his hanging baskets.
This year proved another fruitful one with Mr Wright’s main exhibit in the marquee picking up a first prize.
He said he thoroughly enjoyed the show which had been spectacular under Percy Thrower’s guidance.
Chris Smith of Pennard Plants was another long-running exhibitor, and he scooped the 1951 Silver Cup for the Finest Display of Vegetables for his efforts.
Aside from the horticultural splendour the visitors were also treated to a series of brass band performances and some spectacular arena entertainment including daredevil motorcyclists.
As always the day signed off with a fireworks display.