Chelsea Flower Show
The highly acclaimed Chelsea Flower Show began life in 1804 as The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and was started by the naturalist Sir Joseph Banks and one half of Wedgewood founders, John Wedgwood, who was also a keen botanist. They created the charity with the aim to collect plant information and encourage the improvement of horticultural practice.
During the 1820’s the idea for the Chelsea Flower Show (as we know it today), came from the flower fetes which took place at the Duke of Devonshire's estate in Chiswick, however; by the 1850’s the society was losing money and was only rescued when its then President,
Prince Albert revived the ailing charity and re-named the charity as The Royal Horticultural Society. The venue was also moved to South Kensington. By the late 1860’s the Society was able to re-build its book collection and had acquired over 50,000 books, 1,500 periodicals and 18,000 botanical drawings. Chelsea Flower Show members are also able to borrow books as well.
It wasn’t until 1913 that the Chelsea Flower Show finally moved to its infamous home – the grounds of the Royal Hospital in Chelsea and was so aptly know as the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.
Chelsea Flower Show tickets have been highly popular and approximately over 700,000 visitors have purchased tickets over the time of the show, with loyal visitors returning year on year.
The Chelsea Flower show is sponsored by M&G Investments. The company has sponsored the show for the last three years and has got its own M&G Garden at the show.
Another feature of the 2011 Chelsea Flower Show was the well publicised Irish Sky Garden designed and built by Diarmuid Gavin, and inspired by Oscar winning Dublin animator Richie Baneham who created the visual effects for Avatar (the film).