The inaugural Stratford Home and Garden Show took place last week on the Alscot Estate with Alscot Park house as a backdrop. The estate is based 3 miles south of Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire at the north end of the Cotswolds.
The show was run and managed by BBC Gardening presenter Steve Brookes and his partner Stephanie Lester via their Blooming Marvellous Events Ltd company. Steve is a born and bred in Stratford-upon-Avon and was determined (with Steph) to create and run a home and garden show with great attention to detail and a diverse range of quality exhibitors.
The venue of Alscot Park was key too and had the spectacular grounds, lake and house backdrop to give the event the necessary style and ethos needed for a new show.
The show couldn’t have happened without the support of Emma Holman-West and her Alscot Estate team. Emma was born and grew up on the estate and the West family has been in the West family for over 250 years.
Emma is a great local supporter of businesses and over 150 use some of the business units dotted around the estate grounds.
The Alscot owned The Bell at Alderminster was one of the exhibitors and they did a roaring trade in the hot weather of locally brewing beers.
The show was laid out with the initial exhibitors in 3 large marquees with the other exhibitors in stands and gazebos in the splendid grounds, which fortunately drain the water away exceptionally quickly, which helped with the Saturday brief but torrential downpour.
There was a large selection of nurseries on show, including sponsor Blenheim Nurseries, as well as many more from around the Warwickshire and Cotswolds areas and beyond.
The food vendors were of an interesting variety with a vintage ice-cream van (Annie’s Antics) supplying tasty cold ices etc.. as well as hog roast, pizzas along with the Toot vintage tea rooms with the great view of the lake and house. This was offering a Tea at the Savoy style experience.
Outside were a couple of creations by exhibitor Zimbolic of Toad in Toad Hall style figures.
One of the key options for show visitors was being able to visit and explore the Alscot Park gardens and the splendid ancestral home of the West family.
Visitors had the options of looking around the outside of the house and the planned gardens as well as great views back across the lake to the busy show.
The variety of stalls and exhibitors included a Children’s fun tent, a plant & product crèche,a rural crafts marquee (including woodturning, thatching, basket making and beekeeping) a Demonstration Theatre with talks on subjects such as Bee keeping, gardening tips from host Steve Brookes, easy entertaining by a master chef and savoury pizzas (which were great as I tried a sample).
The show was a great success over the three days and the town will be looking forward to the 2015 event taking place on July 17, 18 & 19th