The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) licensing programme has evolved into such a classic, forming the basis for beautiful collections that span multiple product categories – from greenhouses and gardening gloves to home fragrance and stationery -serving garden centres handsomely for successive seasons.
We were delighted to attend an RHS press event held in June at the supremely civilised venue of St Ermin’s hotel in London, also a preferred destination for secret service rendezvous’, or so I hear, both MI6 and the RHS headquarters being stationed nearby in Westminster.
The event, which took over the hotel’s spectacular roof garden, celebrated the RHS Greening Grey Britain Campaign and the part played by RHS licensees in making it happen. Twenty-four licensees including Burgon & Ball, Moorcroft, Padblocks and Carousel Calendars were represented with products on show at the event.
St Ermin’s roof garden is a series of flat gardens linked by walkways atop the elegant Victorian building, which incorporates a specially constructed bee garden among the beautifully tended fruits and vegetables.
One RHS partner in particular made a major splash with a specially designed greenhouse worth £3,425. The fabulous structure was donated by Gabriel Ash, the only timber greenhouse company endorsed by the Royal Horticultural Society.
Visitors were fascinated to hear about the RHS Greening Grey Britain Campaign, which many RHS licensees are helping to make happen.
The RHS Greening Grey Britain Campaign underlines the important role played by gardens in urban and suburban areas, not just in adding colour, but also in improving air cooling, and air quality, mitigating storm water and flooding, insulating buildings, offering a source of habitats for wildlife, and improving the health of plants and the people who plant them.
With this in mind, the RHS is looking for 6,000 people who can offer ‘a promise to plant’ that could transform 6,000 grey spaces into living planted places by the end of 2017. The campaign, which has caught the imagination of the garden-loving public, has secured over 1500 promises already.
RHS Licensing Manager, Cathy Snow says: “As a UK charity established to share the best in gardening it’s both a duty and a pleasure to promote, support and encourage gardening — and the RHS Greening Grey Britain Campaign is a marvellous way of doing just that. We would like to thank all of the RHS licensees who contributed, Gabriel Ash for its wonderful greenhouse and of course St Ermin’s Hotel for access to its amazing roof garden — a truly fine example in itself of Greening Grey Britain!”
Images from top to bottom: Wax Lyrical, UK Greetings,