A group of 35 volunteers who help to restore and maintain the historic gardens at Derby College’s Broomfield Hall campus have won a Silver medal for their exhibit at the RHS Chatsworth Flower Show.

The volunteers have been working alongside Broomfield Hall’s Head Gardener Samantha Harvey and entered the long border competition at the show with their exhibit, entitled ‘Rhythm of Colour’ - inspired by the long border at Broomfield Hall Gardens.

The border is influenced by renowned Edwardian horticulturalist Gertrude Jekyll’s ‘no nonsense’ philosophy of creating natural planting effects using form and texture and seeing the value of every day plants.

Derby College head gardener Samantha Harvey said:

““Our border is designed to celebrate the history and beauty of Broomfield Hall Gardens at Derby College and champion the work of our amazing volunteers.

“It has been an incredible honour to be invited to exhibit at the RHS Chatsworth Flower Show and we are obviously delighted to have won a silver medal at this highly prestigious event.”

The gardens at Broomfield Hall were created when the original hall was built in 1873 by industrialist Charles Schwind.

They still retain the Victorian layout and work is progressing to improve these further with several developments including contemporary herbaceous planting, a subtropical area, a winter garden and a new rose garden.

Miss Harvey concluded:

“As one of the country's leading horticultural colleges, we aim to inspire passion through our teaching and share our knowledge and expertise with the public by involving them and nurturing their skills through our volunteer scheme.

“Our volunteers each have the unique opportunity to help curate and maintain certain areas of the gardens or take ownership of certain projects, our overall aim is to establish the gardens as a notable visitor attraction in the area by becoming an RHS partner garden.

“We are extremely grateful for the support of some of our former students and local gardeners who regularly come to Broomfield to join the work parties but we really could do with more.”

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