BBC Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time (GQT) will celebrate the blooms of summer by hosting its annual Summer Garden Party on Sunday 29th June 2014 in the impressive grounds of the National Botanic Garden of Wales for the first time.
Radio 4 listeners will be able to hear two special editions of the programme recorded at the event which will be broadcast on Friday 4th July, repeated Sunday 6th July. Those in attendance will also be able to take part in talks and demonstrations. There will be opportunities to meet the GQT team, put questions to them in person, and there’ll be horticultural happenings all across the site, as well as music, food and activities for all the family.
The party will feature the pick of the crop of gardening gurus, including Bob Flowerdew, Bunny Guinness, Chris Beardshaw, Matthew Wilson, Pippa Greenwood, Matthew Biggs, Carole Baxter and GQT chairmen Eric Robson and Peter Gibbs.
Victoria Shepherd, Senior Producer of GQT, says: “We’re very excited to be taking our Summer Garden Party to Wales for the first time in the programme’s history. The National Botanic Garden of Wales is a beautiful setting for the annual day-long festival and both listeners to Radio 4, and those coming along on the day, will be in for some wonderful gardening moments and tips from the panel”
Director of National Botanic Garden Wales, Dr Rosie Plummer, says “We are delighted to be hosting this year’s GQT Summer Garden Party and offer to so many avid gardeners an opportunity to visit our spectacular Botanic Garden. We’ll ensure that everyone – whatever their level of gardening interest and expertise – will have an enjoyable day. After all, plants are what we all depend on and – with the benefit of so many celebrity gardeners promoting their wonders – we will surely be set for a superb occasion.”
Last year’s party, held at Ness Botanic Gardens in south Wirral, was BBC Radio 4’s biggest outdoor audience event of the year and attracted over 2500 people.
Gardeners’ Question Time, Fridays, 3pm, BBC Radio 4
Programme page – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qp2f
Tickets are priced £8.50 (plus a £1.50 booking fee) and are now available via the National Botanic Garden of Wales website:www.gardenofwales.org.uk
Originally titled How Does Your Garden Grow?, the first edition of Gardeners’ Question Time was broadcast in 1947 and took questions from members of the Smallshaw Allotments Association. Since then GQT has become an institution, regularly attracting over 1.5 million listeners weekly.
Over the years the programme has taken more than 30,000 questions. The team have been guests of gardening clubs and other groups up and down the UK, including Leyhill Open Prison, the Palace of Westminster and even a nudist group.
Current chairman Eric Robson celebrated his 20th year of hosting the programme this March.
For the first 47 years the panel were shown the questions in advance, but that tradition was dropped in 1994. Since then, their encyclopaedic answers have been completely spontaneous and reveal their huge experience and depth of gardening knowledge.