College Wins Gold Medal At The Gateshead Summer Flower Show 2009

The annual Gateshead Summer Flower Show was held on 31 July to Sunday 2 August at Gateshead Central Nursery, Whickham Highway. It is one of the largest horticultural events in the country, featuring displays of hundreds of plants housed in 300,000 square feet of marquee space. There was plenty to see and do over the 3 days, including fantastic displays, floral art, a huge craft fair, demonstrations, a continental market, speciality foods, live entertainment and lots of children's activities.

As part of the NVQ Level 2 Apprenticeship in Horticulture, landscaping students, Josh Evans, 19, Paul Hamblett, 18, Karl Taylor, 17, Amos Parkes, 17, Lewis Reynolds, 17, Jonathan Fellows, 20 and Nicholas Churchman, 20, all from East Durham College’s Houghall Campus helped staff in the design and build of a garden that was entered into the Educational Garden category at this year’s show. The design idea was an extensive water rill and a formal garden.

On the 29th and 30th of July, the learners worked exceptionally hard to help build the garden in just two days! Alan McManus, a Horticultural Assessor at East Durham College said, “The students showed professionalism beyond their years, I couldn’t believe that learners of that age could build a garden of such a high standard”.

The students’ hard work was fully rewarded with one of the highest accolades in the show, a Gold Medal Award, presented by RHS Judge John Buttress.

Learner Josh Evans who also works at Mercury House said, “It was a great opportunity to put everything we have learned into practice and we were all so chuffed to build such a fantastic garden.”