RHS Wisley visitors up but grower warns of frontline redundancies

The RHS Wisley Flower Show increased visitor numbers by 12.5 per cent this year, from 23,955 to 26,985.

Exhibitor John Hall said: "I wouldn't normally do this show because I'm a wholesaler but I was at RHS Hampton Court with the British Heather Growers Association and helped landscape the new car park area with heathers, so the RHS invited me to Wisley.


"I'm here to promote heathers and advise the public — 50% of what I'm doing is educational."

Hall added that garden centres have been asking for heathers since the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show in July, whereas before Hall was asking them to order.

He added that having worked with RHS gardeners he would not like to see any "frontline" staff made redundant in the RHS' current round of redundancies.

A representative from grower HW Hyde & Son said: "There is an open feeling, which members of the public like because they can wander around more easily. But some people queued on Saturday for three hours to get in."


The RHS said that, in August, visitor numbers to its four gardens — Wisley, Hyde Hall, Harlow Carr and Rosemoor — were up 15.9 per cent and that membership recruitment at the four RHS gardens was up 19.6 per cent this August against August 2008. The RHS also said income for the first half of 2009 was up year on year.

 

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