Clare Garden Festival, now in its fourth year features a large-scale Garden and Food Fair with stalls from all over Ireland and offers all-day expert garden talks on an accessible stage.
In 2015, for the first time a Bloom-style show garden supported by Bord Bia will be built by Clare designer Eric McNamara with Castleview Garden Design, who has been working with the Clare Garden Festival team for the past months to bring about this great new project.
Gary Graham, Bord Bia’s Bloom Project Manager said: “Bord Bia is now in our second year of supporting regional Garden Shows and we are delighted to welcome Clare Garden Festival on to the programme. Our main aims include assisting garden shows to create core gardening content and thereby differentiate themselves from other shows or festivals. We also aim to leverage Bloom’s highly successful gardens to increase attendance and satisfaction levels at regional shows and to support local and national businesses exhibiting at regional garden shows.”
He finished by saying: “I have had the pleasure of visiting Clare Garden Festival last year and am delighted to see this relatively young festival develop and raising its offering in 2015 and I would like to wish the very best of success to the organisers, the show garden designer and all exhibitors.”
Bernard Hanrahan, Chairman of Clare Garden Festival and Vice-chair of Clare Agricultural Show society said: “Gaining Bord Bia’s support for our new show garden project at Clare Garden Festival is a huge step for the festival and its long-term continuation. On behalf of our whole team, I would like to thank Gary Graham for taking the time to join us at our launch and our designer and all of his team for taking on the huge task of installing the first show garden at Clare Garden Festival.”
Festival Manager and founder Carmen Cronin added: “Reaching the milestone of our first Bloom-style show garden before our 5-year anniversary is a dream come true. When Clare Garden Festival was first launched in 2012 the festival only consisted of an expert talks area with 5 stalls as part of the Agricultural Show. We have since become our own festival and we are retaining all the individual building blocks and adding new ones every year. The show garden is a huge addition for us and the support from Bord Bia and in particular Gary and his team is invaluable.”
The show garden created and erected by Castleview Garden Design will be entitled ‘Sensory Garden ‘Sense over Sight’ and has been described as follows: In our modern world, we often rely too heavily on our sight. This garden wants the visitor to focus on their sight first (as they would normally do), but then to leave this sense behind and explore with their other senses by Hearing the Water, the Trees (and maybe the bees), by Tasting some herbs and being guided through the garden coming to Touch plants and explore them in an accessible way (high planters that are wheelchair accessible) and at the last stage to Smell the surroundings. Sitting down in that area, the visitor may find that with all his senses sharpened a relaxing sit-down will be just want he/she needs.
Eric McNamara, Owner of Castleview Garden Design said: “It is a great honour to be the chosen garden designer for Clare’s first show garden supported by Bord Bia. Beyond the enjoyment and inspiration we hope the visitors will get from it, the project is already becoming a testament to the great collaboration in our horticultural sector here in Clare and beyond and I would like to take this opportunity to thank our already confirmed sponsors and supporters including BUD Garden Centre, Burren Smokehouse, Glenbrook Nurseries, Future Forests, Shane Gilmore, Shannonside, Williams Concrete Products, Zest! and of course Bord Bia.”
Mayor of Ennis Municipal District Johnny Flynn said: “Having Clare Garden Festival centrally located in our county town of Ennis created a great platform for the horticultural sector of Clare and a wonderful festival on our annual calendar of events for the popular and recreationally important area of gardening. The Ennis Municipal District is delighted to support this even like Ennis Town Council has done before. I am delighted to see the festival grow and establish itself and certainly the contribution and interest from Bord Bia is very welcome and I commend the organisers for their work of bringing the festival up yet another step on their continuous ladder of success.”
Clare Garden Festival is an annual festival held at Ennis showgrounds on the last Sunday in April, the 26th April this year. The festival provides a day out for all the family with great food and entertainment available and is a treat for all gardeners from Clare and beyond. Featuring the 2015 slogan ‘Growing on our own Turf’, Clare Garden Festival is run in association with Clare Agricultural Show society and is proudly supported by Larkin Polytunnels, Flynns Pharmacy, Clare County Council, Blarney Castle Gardens, Ennis Tidy Towns and Bord Bia.
Anyone interested in becoming a show garden sponsor, trader or signing up to the PopUp Challenge can contact Carmen on firstname.lastname@example.org or 087 611 75 38.
The full calendar of events and details on the festival itself is available from the festival website http://www.claregardenfestival.com and regular updates from http://www.facebook.com/claregardenfestival .