Our first talk of 2019 is at 7.30pm on Thursday 28th February at the WI Hall, Lowdham. We will be visited by RHS Young Designer Finalist 2018, Garden Designer and Writer, Nicola Oakey. Nicola designed her first show garden at Tatton Flower Show in 2018, entitled ‘Raised by Rivers’ and was awarded a Silver-Gilt medal. We are very lucky to have her visiting us at Lowdham, when she will be sharing her experience behind the scenes designing a show garden. All are welcome and there is a £3 charge to non-members. Please spread the word to anyone that you think might be interested as it would be great to have a good turnout!
COACH TRIP TO DUNHAM MASSEY
Many of you will have noticed on our programme, that we planned to visit the National Trust Winter Garden at Dunham Massey, Cheshire, early in March. I have been in email contact with them since last July, trying to book our visit, but unfortunately, they would not take bookings that far ahead. When I finally got to the stage of discussing a date with them, I was told that they do not take group bookings on a Sunday as the gardens are too busy at this time of the year! I found this very frustrating as I am not sure why they didn’t tell me this back in July! Apologies anyway. I am looking to see if there is somewhere else more suitable to book in March and will keep you posted if I find anywhere.
COACH TRIP TO THE RHS MALVERN SPRING FESTIVAL
On Sunday 12th May, will be visiting the RHS Malvern Spring Festival, Set against the magnificent Malvern Hills, their spring festival is packed with flowers, food, craft and family fun. We will be leaving Lowdham at approximately 8.30am and travelling there by coach, where we can spend the day exploring the show. We have been before and it is a great, busy day out, with so much to see and buy if you want to! We anticipate this being a popular trip, so please book early if you would like to join us.
All are welcome and the cost of the trip is subsidised at £32 to members and £35 to non members. This price covers both the transport and entry to the show (which is £21 to the public).
Lowdham Horticultural Society would like to wish a Happy Christmas to all of our members and best wishes for 2019.
The Society held an Apple Day this year and it was enjoyed by those who supported the event. Many varieties of apples, pears and other fruit were on display, some of which were available for tasting and purchase. A wide range of homemade jams, chutneys and pickles were also available for purchase. Other attractions included demonstrations of ‘juicing’, a local beekeeper with honey for sale, cheeses, fruit trees, refreshments and of course the pork rolls. The event is organised and staged by a ‘small and hardworking team’, this year having to draft in several volunteers to help on the day. We thank all those who helped and everyone who came along.
What a fantastic show on a glorious, hot and sunny day. The committee had decided to use a new style marquee this year for the various horticultural classes and ‘by jingo’ it most certainly seemed to work. We received many favourable comments from visitors to the show including, ‘refreshing’, ‘a new look to the show’, ‘so much lighter’ and ‘more modern’. Visitors were provided with varied entertainment including a marching band, the brilliant Dako Flying Angels, a stilt walker, Punch and Judy, numerous stalls, exhibits and refreshments. We thank everyone who helped or supported the show in any way. 👏👍🏻
PS: Just in case you are wondering about the lack of visitors, the images were taken during the morning of the show, largely for the purpose of ‘showing off’ the new style marquee.
We had a most enjoyable visit, fortunately the weather staying fine although a little cool. The various garden areas provided us with lots to see, taking in the history of the gardens and the continuing work to further improve the visitor experience. In fact, the extensive surrounding parkland included some magnificent trees. I hope you like the images included in this post which include the Chinese Dairy, the Bog Garden, The Pavilion and Rockery and the Hornbeam Maze. (The Maze includes one of our well known members who reached the centre point……. think he was on the coach home! Hope those who went along on this visit had a good day.
Many apologies for the delay in publishing details of an excellent talk which was given by Martin Towsey who is the Woburn Abbey Estate Garden Manager, being responsible to the Duke and Duchess of Bedfordshire. Martin took us through his career which actually started with Nottingham City Council Parks and Gardens Department, (back in the halcyon days of municipal parks and gardens), together with training at Brackenhurst College. He told us about the work being carried out to restore gardens and associated structures to the original layouts and designs. These include the Chinese Dairy, Bog Garden, Kitchen Garden, Camelia House, Hornbeam Maze, Rockery & Pavilion and so many more. Martin and his team of gardeners are also responsible for the Woburn parkland, Safari park, Golf course, Hotel grounds and interestingly the parks and gardens which form part of the Bedfordshire Estate in London. Altogether a most interesting talk for all those Society members and visitors present. We hope to have a coach trip to Woburn and all it encompasses on Sunday 4th June 2017. This should be a most rewarding visit.
Our next talk is on Thursday 15th December, which we plan to follow up with a visit to Woburn next June. Join us for a mince pie and glass of wine and to listen to Martin share his knowledge and passion for the gardens and estate. All are welcome with a charge of £4 to non-members. Note the change of venue – Lowdham Community Building, off Old Tannery Drive.
Our hardworking Chairperson (Nicola) is seen introducing an excellent talk with superb photographs which was delivered by Jack Perks (Wildlife and Underwater Specialist). The talk was thoroughly enjoyed by members and visitors to Lowdham W.I. Hall. Jack is a wildlife cameraman, film maker, researcher and presenter who has worked for the BBC on Springwatch 2016 and Countryfile. In fact, the Sunday prior to his talk he appeared on BBC Countryfile with a fascinating item about chubb in the Fairham Brook, including images of the fish feeding on blackberries which were falling into the brook. He took us from the source of rivers to the sea with wonderful images of wildlife along the banks and in the water. Altogether, a most worthwhile talk by a professional Natural History photographer who is based in the East Midlands. Perhaps you could do some research yourselves and have a look on his website and Facebook page.
After technical ‘hitches’ between an ‘Apple’ iPad and our website, with photos being shown upside down, at last a short ‘blog’ about a successful ‘Apple’ Day event in Lowdham Village Hall. We had 380 adults plus children coming to the show with excellent feedback from visitors. As well as so many varieties of apples and pears on display, there was fruit tasting, jams and chutneys to purchase, local honey, cider, perry, teas and homemade cakes, and of course the pork cobs. Adrian, our national prize winning fruit grower was giving fruit pressing demonstrations and advice on fruit varieties throughout the event.
We thank all those who came along and of course everyone who participated or helped in any way.