Half centenary for celebrated Spalding show gardens

A colourful land train leading the Tulipmania judging procession in May this year.  SG020515-173TW

A colourful land train leading the Tulipmania judging procession in May this year. SG020515-173TW

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Extended celebrations will be held next spring to mark the half-centenary of Springfields Horticultural Society’s Festival Gardens in Spalding.

While 1966 is etched in most people’s memories as the year England won the World Cup, it was also the year a dream came true for visionaries who wanted to showcase Spalding and South Holland’s expertise in horticulture – in particular the cultivation and development of flowers grown from bulbs and corms.

Previous visitors have included the Queen Mum and Princess Anne

More than a million bulbs, 30,000 trees, a lake, lawns, shrubs, plants and two-and-a-half miles of roadways transformed 20 acres of farmland into the stunning show gardens that opened on April 6.

There will be a little over six weeks devoted to celebrations next year, including highlights such as the Spring Flower and Gardening Show, incorporating Lincolnshire Daffodil Society’s 107th annual competition, to be held on April 16 and 17, Tulipfest weekend on April 30 and May 1, and a finale gala dinner on May 21.

Springfields Horticultural Society chief executive David Norton said the society will adopt its formal planting policy at the end of November, but it’s likely there will be more tulips planted than last year, new displays – particularly in the woodland area where the miniature railway runs – and some ‘tulip walk’ routes.

The society also wants to mount an exhibition on its history.

Your memories – and your photographs – could help Springfields Horticultural Society as it looks back over the last 50 years.


The society wants to stage an exhibition on its history, including the milestones that shaped it.


Mr Norton said the society would prefer to receive photographs that do not need to be returned to the senders. Memories and non-returnable photographs can be sent to: Springfields Horticultural Society, Camelgate, Spalding PE12 6ET.


• Visitors have included Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother in 1986 and her granddaughter, HRH The Princess Royal (Princess Anne), in 2004.

Previously ...

Compendium of colour for Tulipmania and Springfields Festival 2015

Flower Parade legacy will live on with big floral event at Springfields