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Leeds Castle Festival of Flowers near Maidstone opens with a flourish

It may be more than a century since the last private owner of Leeds Castle, near Maidstone, held the castle's first flower festival, but she was there in spirit as the 2019 festival got underway.

Her love of flowers and lavish parties continued on with this year's festival, which was opened to the public at the weekend and continues until Thursday, September 19.

Floral designs inspired by Lady Baillie at Leeds Castle's Festival of Flowers
Floral designs inspired by Lady Baillie at Leeds Castle's Festival of Flowers

Of the 20 designs on show by expert florists from across the world, many took inspiration from Lady Baillie herself - whether it was a gown she might have worn, surrounded by beautiful blooms, or champagne glasses ready to clink.

The designers have succeeded in making the "loveliest castle in the world" look even more lovely.

And you can help decide one of the winning designs as there is People's Choice vote, which all visitors can vote for as they go around the castle looking at the 20 designs throughout the week.

English garden designer and television personality Joe Swift was at the castle at the weekend to cut the ribbon and allow guests in to glimpse the stunning displays, which cover staircases, bedrooms, bathrooms and a banqueting hall, with splashes of colour and fragrant aromas.

Floral Garden Party in The Chapel by Claire Cowling of Thrive Floristry
Floral Garden Party in The Chapel by Claire Cowling of Thrive Floristry

As visitors arrive, they are greeted with a huge floral 900 on the lawn, reminding them that the historic castle is celebrating its 900th year this year.

There is an impressive line-up of internationally award winning floral designers, including Dr Solomon Leong from Hong Kong, Matthew

Landers and Dutch designer Dennnis Kneepkens, and beautiful birthday-styled blooms spilling out for visitors to enjoy. Designs also incorporated other elements of the county, including Staplehurst-based Hush Heath wines.

Colour plays a part in the Festival of Flowers designs at Leeds Castle
Colour plays a part in the Festival of Flowers designs at Leeds Castle

Entry for the Festival of Flowers is included in a standard ticket. To find out more go to leeds-castle.com

To find out what’s going on in the county and for all the latest entertainment news click here.


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