Malvern Autumn Show 2018, in association with Weston Cider Mill, welcomed more than 68,000 people through the gates of the Three Counties Showground in Malvern, Worcestershire for a record-breaking weekend.
With a staggering six new world records set in the CANNA UK National Giant Vegetables Championship, a record number of visitors to the show and a bumper crop of experts sharing their passion and knowhow, the event was nothing less than a showstopper.
With a fresh look and layout, regular visitors were delighted with the new sections that brought something for everyone to enjoy. From willow wand making and spoon carving in the rural crafts area, to mini golf and circus skills on the Family Green, giant tortoises and hairless dogs in the World of Animals there was something to keep all the family entertained. A particularly popular new addition was the Top Dogs Arena hosted by former BBC Blue Peter presenter and dog lover, Peter Purves. This lively area showcased the wonderful ability and agility of man’s best friend.
Valentine Warner and Mark Diacono headlined the Autumn Potager Kitchen whilst a bumper crop of horticultural experts including BBC Gardeners’ World presenters Joe Swift, Carol Klein and Alys Fowler shared their passion, top tips and gardening know how in the Autumn Potager Theatre. Broadcasting legend, Gyles Brandreth stole the show with his ‘Just a Minute – I’m in the Garden’ and Tales from the Wardrobe.
Head of Show, Diana Walton, said: “This is my second year of leading Malvern Autumn Show and I wanted to refresh things to make it feel like an exciting new show. We love this event as much as our visitors, so I’m thrilled that the reaction to the new additions and layout have been so well received. The whole show has been supersized, from record breaking visitor numbers to world record breaking giant vegetables and we’re already excited about our plans for next year.”
The CANNA UK National Giant Vegetables Championship saw a staggering six World Records across 33 categories, with almost 600 entries in total. The growers brought their supersized submissions from the length and breadth of the country to the largest giant vegetables competition in the UK.
The first record, the World’s Heaviest Celery, was broken at midday on Friday by Under Gardener, Sam Purvis from The Old Rectory in Henley. He proudly held the title for a full five minutes before it was snatched from his grasp by Estate Manager and boss, Gary Heeks with his sizeable celery weighing in at 42kg, the same as a Chimpanzee.
A giant vegetable world stalwart Ian Neale, from Newport added a further two world records to his haul: World’s Heaviest Aubergine (3.06kg) and World’s Heaviest Bell Pepper (0.72kg).
Tim Saint from Reading, finally saw the fruits of his labours with a world record for the World’s Heaviest Red Cabbage. Previous world record holder, Cornishman David Thomas gave Tim the seed for his colossal cabbage that tipped the scales at 23.7kg.
The record for the World’s Heaviest Leek was set at Malvern Autumn Show 2014 by Paul Rochester from County Durham. This year he smashed his previous record with a leek weighing in at 10.7kg.
Malvern Autumn Show hosted the last major RHS Flower Show of the season in a brand new Floral Marquee at the heart of the new Gardening Village. Fifty three award-winning nurseries showcased a dazzling array of plants, shrubs and produce with 25 receiving RHS gold medals.
For the first time a nursery from the Orchard Pavilion was awarded the coveted Best in Show title. R V Roger Ltd from Pickering, Yorkshire’s traditional display of orchard fruit showcased many heritage varieties and caught the judges eye to take home the top accolade.
In the Floral Fiesta, the growers were awarded five medals in total, one gold, two silver gilt, one silver medal and one bronze medal for their displays. The area was mentored and supported by celebrity florist, Jonathan Moseley with the aim of supporting British flower growers. It provided a platform to demonstrate the wealth, beauty and diversity of flowers that can be grown in this country. Show visitors watched inspiring seasonal demonstrations including a woodland wedding showcase by former Royal florist, Sarah Champier.
The Floral Art stars were Mrs Margaret Thomas who was awarded Best In Show. Best Use of Colour went to first time exhibitor Mrs Alexandra Bolton and Best Use of Foliage went to Mrs Barbara Pullen.
Join us next year for Malvern Autumn Show 2019 which will take place on Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th September.