A Wheelchair Accessible Garden Wins Best In Show At RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2023
Plus: all the prize winners to know
The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is back for another year, drawing thousands of budding botanists and professional horticulturalists to London. Not just an opportunity to look at lovely flowers, the Show’s highly competitive awards have just been announced. Here are the winners.
The 2023 Winners At RHS Chelsea Flower Show
The RHS Chelsea Flower Show winners have been revealed, with a wheelchair accessible garden designed for patients recovering from spinal injury securing the top prize, Best in Show. The garden, called ‘Horatio’s Garden’, is the first fully accessible garden to win the category.
Wheelchair accessibility is fundamental to the entire design of Horatio’s Garden, which was designed by Charlotte Harris and Hugo Bugg, the duo behind Harris Bugg Studio. Upon winning the prestigious prize, the pair said, ‘It’s unbelievable and still sinking in.’
Named for the eponymous charity – which nurtures people’s wellbeing after spinal injury in beautiful garden sanctuaries in NHS spinal injury centres – the garden will relocate to Sheffield’s Northern General Hospital in 2024, part of Chelsea Flower Show’s new 2023 requirement that gardens should have a plan for life after the show, whether that’s full relocation or rehoming in parts.
‘It’s a really special garden for us because of the nature of the charity,’ Charlotte and Hugo added. ‘Horatio’s is a charity about gardens and how they help on journeys of healing, and so it feels absolutely right that it should win Best in Show. We are delighted for the charity, and we hope it helps to raise the profile of the incredible work they do, and are delighted it will live on to form the heart of Horatio’s Garden Sheffield after the show.’
Before – during – after…
A Gold medal for #HoratiosGardenChelsea!🏅Together with @HarrisBugg, we are overjoyed and overwhelmed and full of gratitude to everyone who has been a part of this garden 💚 See you in Sheffield for the eighth Horatio’s Garden! @The_RHS @ProjGivingBack pic.twitter.com/pfNuUPy4Ni
— Horatio’s Garden Charity (@HoratiosGarden) May 23, 2023
The Chair of Show Garden Judges, Marie-Louise Agius, added: ‘The standard of the Show Gardens this year was extremely high. What particularly stood out about The Horatio’s Garden was how the design had been driven by the end user, to be experienced by spinal injury patients from a bed or wheelchair.
‘The garden is uplifting, beautiful and considered, and for someone who has had a life altering spinal injury, it will provide them with a wonderful sanctuary,’ Marie-Louise said. ‘The brief and the garden was delivered at an exceptional level.’
Other notable winners at the 2023 Show include six-time Gold medal winner Cleve West, whose entry, The Centrepoint Garden, bagged the prize for Best Construction in the Show Garden category. With Cleve describing the garden as a ‘very visceral metaphor for young people facing homelessness’, The Centrepoint Garden centres a half-demolished building with upended tree roots. Meanwhile, the Best in Show winner for the Sanctuary Gardens category was awarded to Charlie Hawkes’ The National Brain Appeal’s Rare Space Garden, and the winner of Best in Show for Balcony and Container Gardens is Rosemary Coldstream for Feels Like Home.
All The Winners At RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2023
- Best Show Garden: Horatio’s Garden, designed by Charlotte Harris and Hugo Bugg
- Best Construction Award (Show Garden): The Centrepoint Garden, built by Crocus Ltd
- Best Sanctuary Garden: The National Brain Appeal’s Rare Space, designed by Charlie Hawkes
- Best Construction Award (Sanctuary Garden): The National Brain Appeal’s Rare Space, built by Landscape Associates Ltd
- Best Balcony & Container Garden: Feels Like Home, designed by Rosemary Coldstream
- Best All About Plants Garden: The Talitha Arts Garden, designed by Joe and Laura Carey
- Best Exhibit in the Great Pavilion: Kells Bay House & Gardens, Ferns of Kells Bay Gardens
- New Design Award: Caley Brothers, Home-grown edible mushrooms
- RHS Chelsea Plant of the Year 2023: Agapanthus BLACK JACK (‘Dwaghyb02’)
- Best Discovery Exhibit: Sparsholt College, Rustic Recipes Reimagined
- Best House Plant Studio: Geb & Green, Steam.Clean.Plant.Repeat
- Best Floristry Exhibit: Hubbards Florist: The Beauty of Recycling, Floral Bin
- Ambassadors’ Choice: Emma Thistlethwaite: Annual, Floral Installation
- RHS Chelsea Sustainable Garden Product of the Year 2023: Lindum Wildflower Turf
Discover the gold, silver-gilt, silver and bronze medallists at rhs.org.uk
Featured image: Horatio’s Garden. Designed by Charlotte Harris and Hugo Bugg. Sponsored by Horatio’s Garden and Project Giving Back. Show Garden. RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2023. Stand no 321. (© RHS/Neil Hepworth)
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