Stonor House was transformed with wonderful displays of Tulips and Spring Flowers over the bank holiday weekend for their first Spring Flower Festival. Florists and students from the Berkshire College of Agriculture (BCA) decorated the rooms with thousands of flowers in a variety of stunning arrangements. We particularly loved the dressmaker’s dummy in Lady Camoy’s Room, the winding tree branches in the Pantry and the stunning big vase in the Study.
The festival was supported by de Jager bulbs who supplied all the flowers for the festival and floral expert Jonathan Moseley of BBC’s Big Allotment Challenge was a great inspiration and support for the event as well as doing two ‘Tulipmania’ demonstrations over the weekend.
Jonathan has been working professionally with flowers for over 20 years. His love of flowers started when his Grandfather gave him with a greenhouse on his eleventh birthday. His favourite flower is the snowdrop and he’s not a great fan of the Carnation. In his demonstrations, Jonathan showed how to do a selection of arrangements based around tulips and gave handy tips on how to make flowers last longer and ideas on what to grow in your garden. He also told stories and anecdotes from his life (he’s done a number of celebrity weddings) before opening the floor to questions. This was Jonathan’s first visit to Stonor. He has worked closely with Chatsworth in Derbyshire where he is from. He said, “Stonor is quite magnificent and flowers bring a place to life – they give a place a great personalised touch.” Jonathan is a big supporter of growing and using British Flowers as well as supporting the next generation of florists. “Floristry in UK is a struggling occupation and five flower shops a week are closing,” Jonathan added.
Jonathan’s arrangements from the demonstrations were raffled at the end and the money raised was going to Greenfingers, a national charity which supports children and their families in hospices by creating inspiring gardens form them to relax and enjoy.
Suzanne Harding from BCA said, “The Level 3 Floristry students (Lesley Parkes, Danni Hill, Lee Gilmour, Komila Kreer, Holly Spong, Samantha Chapman, Tyla Goodchild and Megan Norman) were able to help with the Tulip and Spring Festival at Stonor Park. It was a great privilege to be asked and an amazing experience for us all. This kind of opportunity is rare and we valued every minute.”
William Stonor said, “We are indebted to the talented florists who have designed imaginative arrangements to complement the rooms using a variety of floristry skills, both classic and modern. I hope the visitors enjoyed seeing the beautiful displays at this first open house event of the 2016 season. We have lots planned for the summer including The Great Antique and Vintage Car Boot Fair on 29 May and outdoor cinema on 15 and 16 July when we will be showing the classic films, Top Gun and Grease.”
For more information go to www.stonor.com