The hotel's outdoor venue for lunch at the public spaces workshop I attended last Thursday
Here's the main points I've mentioned thus far from last week's workshop:
- We must say NO! to mediocre quality in our public spaces and,
- Community involvement is key to success
- Nick Coslet - Marketing Director of Palmstead Nurseries, our hosts. Nick gave a few pointers on public planting from a nurseryman's experience in addition to welcoming us all for the day
- Kate Lowe - Editor of Horticulture Week, who chaired the workshop and gave an industry overview *
- Chris Beardshaw - the well-loved TV gardener, giving us the socio-political background to public open spaces. I was impressed by his knowledge and passion for the subject. I'm also glad he gave a different presentation to the one advertised (though Ideas for Exciting Planting would have been good too), as I'd been seeking just this kind of overview in my background research and failed
- Richard Bisgrove of Reading University's Landscape Management department - an expert on Gertrude Jekyll and William Robinson, who also spoke about climate change
- John Tweddle - Westminster council's open spaces manager, who looked at open space management issues from the Local Authority (LA) viewpoint. John freely admitted he's in the privileged position of having a unusually large budget when compared with other LAs, but he still has to deliver value for money
- Brita von Schoenaich - the open space story from the naturalistic and landscape architect's viewpoints. Brita has also indulged in a little guerrilla gardening in her time!
However, I did have one fantastic surprise, which I must tell you about before I go. I bumped into Catherine Kenny of Weeding Between the Lines at lunchtime. She'd been searching for me all morning and of course I should have realised she might be there, seeing I was pretty much on her doorstep. It was lovely to meet her and I can happily report she's very well, extremely busy with all her garden design projects, so doesn't have the time to blog right now. Though I do see a few green shoots over there at the moment :)
So where does having Breakfast with Mr Beardshaw come in? Well, we did exchange pleasantries over the scrambled eggs and grilled tomato trays, but Breakfast at the Diagonally Opposite End of the Dining Room from Mr Beardshaw, doesn't grab the attention quite so much does it? ;)
* = I can't provide you with a meaningful link to her work as you need to subscribe to Horticulture Week in order to do so. As I find that makes me really cross when that happens with links on other blogs and websites - imagine me stamping my foot in annoyance at this point - I'm not going down that road here. Harrumph.