Spa Town Spectacle for RHS Malvern Spring festival 2017

Monday 6 February 2017

An entirely new vision brings RHS Malvern Spring Festival into full bloom for 2017, taking inspiration from the event’s Spa town heritage. The landmark four-day spectacle, taking place from Thursday 11 – Sunday 14 May at the Three Counties Showground, welcomes all new features and exhibits and a vibrant line up of the finest in gardening, food and lifestyle.

Jane Furze, Head of RHS Malvern Spring Festival, said: “We are so excited to share the glorious plans that are afoot for RHS Malvern Spring Festival 2017. It really is going to be a sensational year for our leading event with plenty for everyone. Whether you’re a newcomer to gardening, a veteran horticulturalist or simply looking for a family day out, RHS Malvern Spring Festival has it all. We look forward to welcoming visitors to our stunning showcase of spring in May.”

The new vision for RHS Malvern Spring Festival takes inspiration from Malvern Spa’s Victorian heyday as a fashionable health resort – a place where day-trippers descended to take advantage of the clean air and to enjoy the health giving waters amongst the romantic beauty of the hills and into a town of pleasure gardens, assembly rooms and numerous eating-places.

Promising a bountiful day out for everyone, visitors can expect:

NEW FOR 2017

RHS Malvern Spring Festival boasts the UK’s longest Floral Marquee at over 195 metres – the equivalent length of four Olympic swimming pools. The Floral Marquee welcomes more than 65 leading UK and international nurseries, setting the horticultural standards with impressive displays of prized blooms and new varieties. Exhibitors in the Floral Marquee represent the very best in plants and advice available. Here visitors can browse and buy from the very best.

BBC Gardeners’ World presenter and acclaimed garden expert, Joe Swift brings to life a new centerpiece of the Floral Marquee – Joe’s Plant Hunter Parlour. This immersive experience like no other features daily talks from award winning nurseries and welcomes budding gardeners big and small to discover, learn and indulge their inner plant hunter.

Newly introduced for the very first time, this dedicated zone interprets and explores the theme of health and wellbeing in the 21st century.

The centrepiece of the Live Well zone, British Queen of Herbs, Jekka McVicar designs and builds a specially commissioned permanent garden, bringing to life the role gardens continue to play in our health and sense of wellbeing. Jekka’s garden is a living working space for mind, body and senses.

The garden is both a tranquil seating space where visitors can spend time amongst the aromatic herb beds, and a place to learn and explore what living well meant in yesteryear and what it means today. Visitors are invited to join daily ‘herbal conversations’ with Jekka herself and explore the awe-inspiring world of alternative therapies. The garden is in support of Pathways, a day service for adults with learning disabilities and difficulties.

A horticultural experience by Jon Wheatley, RHS Gold Medal winning gardener and Chairman of RHS South West in Bloom, Grow takes inspiration from interactive Country gardens and wildflower borders, showcasing a variety of edible beds and bountiful Grow To Show competitions.

A brand new category introduced for the very first time to RHS Malvern Spring Festival, offering a unique platform for emerging gardening talent. Glorious gardens from up and coming designers bring to life the new vision and reflect the thirst for knowledge, new horizons and innovative technology at the heart of Malvern’s Victorian heritage. Gold Medal winning Chelsea garden designer, Jo Thompson is mentoring the new talent as they embark on this exciting new challenge. The Spa Gardens category also features one garden from an international designer supported by the esteemed Moscow Flower Show. This is part of a newly introduced exchange programme, which in return offers one selected British Spa Garden designer the once in a lifetime chance to showcase at Moscow Flower Show in July.

A premium quality shopping experience, it is here that visitors can pick up unique pieces in fashion, furniture, homewares, horticulture, gifts and more from independent designers, craftsmen, artisans and artists.

An exciting open-air shopping experience with over 35 nurseries, each showcasing a wonderful array of plants. Plant steals aplenty can be found here, especially during the famous sell-off on Sunday.


The heart of RHS Malvern Spring Festival featuring a colourful array of pleasure gardens, a bandstand of live music, an impressive collection of classic cars, an array of global flavours from the International Street Food Market, and plenty of places to picnic. It is here visitors rediscover the Victorian love of amusement, surprise and delight, alongside enjoying unique show gardens unlike any other.

Hosted by RHS Malvern Spring Festival favourite and award winning writer and broadcaster, James Alexander-Sinclair, the Festival Theatre plays host to a lively line up of leading experts and familiar faces. Visitors may take a seat and enjoy demonstrations, talks and exciting features as personalities share their knowledge and passion for all things gardening and food. Confirmed experts include Carol Klein, Joe Swift, Jekka McVicar and Jon Wheatley with plenty more to be announced soon.

The highest standard of garden design is showcased in the Show Gardens of RHS Malvern Spring Festival 2017. Leading designers create awe-inspiring gardens as they compete for prestigious RHS accolades including Gold medals and the coveted Best In Show. RHS Malvern Spring Festival is famed as the show that raises the bar for design and horticultural talent with numerous RHS Gold medals awarded in 2016. This year is tipped to be no exception.

A foodie hotspot, the Food & Drink Pavilion is a magnificent celebration of British tastes with bountiful offerings from the country’s best-loved artisan producers. Expect the freshest field produce, big cheeses, bread of heaven, specialty gins, decadent bakes and more.

This animated live kitchen, hosted by Mark Diacono, showcases a line up of delicious cookery demonstrations from culinary experts and the country’s top chefs. Mark shares advice from his home farm cookery school, Otter Farm and experience as head gardener at River Cottage.

A hive of activity tailored to inspire the next generation of gardeners and horticulturalists with fun hands-on activities to help children learn and explore the wonderful world of plants and gardens.

Budding gardeners great and small are invited to get green fingered with a dedicated Family Day on the Sunday of RHS Malvern Spring Festival. This exciting and educational day with plenty of hands on activities is the ideal opportunity to engage children in the fun of gardening and the great outdoors. Expect Kids Cookery demonstrations, make and take crafts, Kids Plant and Grow workshops with BBC Blue Peter Gardener, Chris Collins and more.

RHS Malvern Spring Festival is one of the only RHS Shows in the UK to have a collection of Show Gardens designed and built entirely by young people. This year sees over 12 schools and educational groups from across the three counties taking part, led by BBC Blue Peter Gardener, Chris Collins.

RHS Malvern Spring Festival 2017 will take place from Thursday 11 May until Sunday 14 May. For more information, please call 01684 584900 or visit



Notes to editors

The 32nd RHS Malvern Spring Festival takes place Thursday 11 to Sunday 14 May 2017 at the Three Counties Showground. It became the third largest and fastest growing RHS show in 2016 and is renowned for showcasing the latest trends in garden design, plants and innovation. Visitors can expect RHS Gold Medal winning show gardens and, in the world’s the longest Floral Marquee, an abundance of specialist nurseries showcasing and selling their plants, from across the UK. A strong food strand complements the gardening content and ensures the festival remains relevant to modern lifestyles. New for 2017, a ‘spa resort’ theme which takes its inspiration from Malvern Spa’s heyday is to be launched allowing for the development of new themes including the role of gardens and gardening in people’s health and wellbeing. For more information about the festival, please call 01684 584900 or visit

Jess Cook / Ellie Mainwaring
Silver Ball PR
Tel: 07810 771177 / 07595 920111
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The RHS believes that gardening improves the quality of life and that everyone should have access to great garden experiences. As a charity we help to bring gardening into people's lives and support gardeners of all levels and abilities; whether they are expert horticulturists or children who are planting seeds for the very first time.

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