You may have already heard the news via our socials. But at Champain, we are absolutely thrilled to be working on our first project for The Chelsea Flower Show. The prestigious flower show will run for six days from Tuesday 24th to Saturday 28th of May 2022, at The Royal Hospital, Chelsea. While it took place in September last year for the first time in the show’s 108-year history, this year will see the event return to its usual May dates.
The Stitchers’ Garden was designed by Frederic Whyte, an award-winning landscape and garden designer. Working across the UK, his portfolio also includes projects in Italy and most recently, Cape Town, South Africa.
The garden will be built by ourselves and our sister company, Brampton Willows. It celebrates Fine Cell Work, a charity teaching prisoners needlework, a skill that nurtures their self-worth and encourages them to lead independent and crime-free lives upon release. The Stitchers’ Garden celebrates Fine Cell Work’s 25th anniversary. It couldn’t have been done without the generous sponsors from Nina Campbell and William Yeoward.
Visitors will see into the garden through a ‘cell’. This simple structure, made of steel, with contemporary woven willow panels replicates the dimensions of their prison space. Opposite, a larger pavilion echoes the form of the cell. It is also constructed of steel, with more open woven willow panels. It is a metaphor for the space in which the creative exchange between prisoners, designers and Fine Cell Work takes place. Between these two structures is a pool with fountain jets. The pool sits in a herbaceous parterre, harmoniously filled with planting combinations in pale yellow, soft pinks and cream.
The garden feels restful and inspiring. It is reflective and uplifting, expansive and optimistic, solitary and celebratory, calming but colourful.