Flower power as Stourport garden centre wins Chelsea 2016 award

A popular family-run garden centre from Stourport has won the silver gilt on the opening day of the prestigious RHS Chelsea Flower Show in London.

Cook’s Garden Centre, based on Worcester Road, won the prize on Tuesday, May 24, at Royal Hospital Chelsea for their display in the Floral Marquee – known as the show’s centrepiece.

Their colourful arrangement, which contained white hydrangea quercifolias and blue hydrangea fireworks, has helped them win the prize for a second year in a row.

Owner Paul Cook, 59, said: “We are chuffed to bits to get silver. It is a shame we couldn’t quite make it to gold but I think if we had more tubs we would have got the gold medal.

“We have been planning this since August so it has been nearly 12 months of preparation but it took four days to build it and one day to transport it down.

“We are celebrating our 35th anniversary this year so it would have been nice to have got that gold medal to put the icing on the cake.”

Two years ago, Cooks claimed a hat-trick of gold prizes in the RHS Malvern Spring Festival, Flower Show Tatton Park, and Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.

After coming close to the top prize at Chelsea for a second year running, Mr Cook is now eager to return even stronger and target gold next year.

He said: “We have won a few RHS gold medals in the past and last year we won the silver gilt at the Chelsea Flower Show as well.

“I have always said to get a gold medal it is a three-year project so we are going to try again next year.”

Mr Cook, who travelled to the show with daughter Hannah, 23, has been thankful of support from Stourport residents.

He added: “We have had some tremendous support and next week when I go into the supermarkets people will probably be stopping me – so it’s incredible!”

The Chelsea Flower Show runs from Tuesday until May 28.

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