Southport Flower Show celebrates its 90th anniversary this summer with a giant garden party.
The annual show is planning a series of special events for the landmark year, including a gala dinner, Ladies Day & VIP hospitality.
Southport attracts tens of thousands of visitors every August to the prize blooms in the Grand Floral Marquee and star turns by top celebrity gardeners.
Strictly Come Dancing judge Bruno Tonioli will open the 2019 show and launch a packed programme of entertainment.
Kids go free to the show and children’s TV star Justin Fletcher is bringing his stage act to amuse the show’s younger visitors.
Gardeners’ Question Time presenters Matthew Wilson and Christine Walkden are among the experts from TV and radio on hand to share advice with visitors.
Meanwhile, some of the nation’s top growers will compete for the prestigious prizes while leading designers create stunning show gardens.
This year, primary children across the north west are competing to design one of the show gardens and win funds to improve their school grounds.
Organisers aim to turn the show into a giant garden party spread across the 34 acres of Victoria Park close to the centre of Southport.
The first Southport Flower Show was held in the 1920s, organised by local businessmen who wanted to celebrate the region’s horticulture.
It has grown into Britain’s largest independent flower show and one of the highlights of the north-west’s summer calendar.
In recent years the event has expanded the programme to include a food festival with celebrity chefs, trade stands, shopping village, and children’s entertainment.
In the food village for 2019, there will be cooking demonstrations by Ellis Barrie, head chef of renowned Marram Grass restaurant in Anglesey, who featured on the BBC 2’s Great British Menu.
Southport is run on a not-for-profit basis, with the proceeds dedicated towards the continued upkeep and maintenance of Victoria Park, where the show is staged every year.
Visitors and exhibitors travel from all around the country to the seaside show with many returning year after year.
General Manager Ray Roukin said: “It’s our 90th anniversary this year and we want visitors to celebrate with us.
“We’re proud the show has been such a success for 90 years and generates a significant boost to the regional economy.”
This year’s show opens on Thursday 15th August and runs for four days until Sunday 18th August.
The event has traditionally been an opportunity for north west businesses to entertain clients and staff and there are a range of hospitality packages at the show.
For the 90th anniversary event there is a celebration gala dinner at the end of the opening day with £60 tickets covering the cost of a meal and entertainment plus a pass for any day of the show.
The popular Ladies Day, which is held on the Friday and includes a lunchtime meal and entertainment, has already sold out for 2019.
Southport also offers a £120-a-head VIP experience with a glass of Pimm’s on arrival plus three-course lunch, complimentary bar and afternoon tea to stay refreshed throughout the day.
For more information visit https://www.ticketquarter.co.uk/southportflowershow/online/default.asp