Festival Dinner raises £31,000 of hope for people in horticulture

Perennial, the charity helping people in horticulture, thanks guests and sponsors for helping to raise over £30,000 at its Festival Dinner. The celebratory fundraising evening with prize auction and raffle was held in October at One Whitehall Place in support of all those working with plants, trees, flowers or grass.

Host and auctioneer Addison Gelpey raised thousands with his witty and fun filled auction that included The Newt’s ‘Horticulturalist’ adventure, One-to-one Garden and Flower Photography Masterclass with Clive Nichols and Thatchers Orchard Tour and Cider Tasting for eight at the family farm in Somerset.

Guests were inspired by a Q & A with former Olympic swimmer Mark Foster and charmed by Tom Leonard, AKA Daisy Desire – The Drag Queen Gardener who brought a touch of glamour to the evening.

Peter Newman, Chief Executive of Perennial, says: “This very special evening was an opportunity for our friends and supporters to come together in support of our purpose to build better futures for people in horticulture and their families. Their generosity on the night will benefit many people in the horticulture sector. Thank you so much to all who made this evening a success. Your support is truly appreciated.”

Mollie Higginson, Co-Chair of Young People in Horticulture Association (YPHA) commented: “A truly wonderful evening with such a varied group of plants people coming together to raise funds for a truly worthwhile charity. It’s vital that we continue to work together to ensure that young people joining our industry know that they can access support through Perennial.”

Perennial (The Gardeners’ Benevolent Institution) was founded in 1839 at an annual dinner for ‘nurserymen, florists and amateurs’. From the outset, the Institution aimed to provide a source of income for gardeners. By the mid 1840s, it was already having a major impact and an annual fundraising dinner was established – Festival Dinner.