Showcase event highlights Coolings Nurseries centenary

Coolings Nurseries' Chelsea-style Summer Showcase this year is a garden dedicated to the company's centenary.

The Kent garden centre is seeking planning permission for a rebuild and showed off its community credentials to the Sevenoaks mayor at the opening of the event, with chairman Paul Cooling mentioning a craft fair, schools competition, Rhys certificate presentation, garden party, tea dance and hospice fundraiser all in a marquee at the site, plus a Spitfire flypast.

Managing director Gary Carvosso said June was 30 per cent up thanks to plant sales, but sales by the end of May had been two per cent down. He added that he is expecting a hard winter in the east.

Coolings has run "saves of the century" centenary deals this year, helping to sell off any bedding backlogs from its own nurseries.

Carvosso said he is also planning a dahlia show this year and hopes to put up AA signs on surrounding roads, which cost £360 for 10 and require planning permission.

The appeal for the revamp of the award-winning centre should be heard by the end of this month.

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