Letter from Jeff Banning to Alec Clark:
In March this year the Ayr community was shocked to hear that the Ayrshire Horticultural Association had decided, after many years, to cancel the Ayr Flower Show in this and future years. As a result John Scott, the local Ayr MSP called a town hall meeting of all interested parties to see what could be done to ensure the continuation of a flower and produce show of some description starting this year!
Subsequently a small committee of volunteers was set up to do just that. With just 20 weeks to organise an event that would normally take a year to organise and with no resources, no money and no location it was a stiff challenge to take on. But now 15 weeks in we have a new company established to run the show, we have banking arrangements, a website and Facebook page but more importantly we have secured a venue at Ayr Racecourse on Friday 18th and Saturday 19th August this year.
In parallel we have been pulling out all the stops to recruit both exhibitors and traders to participate and the signs are good that we will be able to put on an impressive show, albeit somewhat reduced in scale from the old flower show. Likewise the level of goodwill towards an Ayr show in some form is overwhelming and we are hoping that the public will turn out in large numbers.
We want to make the show a more affordable, community based event and so entry has been set at just £5 with no charge for accompanied children under 16.
All of this has required a huge effort from the people involved but we are confident that we can put on a good show for the gardening community and provide them with a value for money event upon which we can build next year. Above all, as we enter the final few weeks before the show we need to ensure that as many of the general public as possible are aware that the show will take place. Despite extensive efforts in the press, on social media and from a 7,000 leaflet campaign there is evidence that many people are unaware that this show will go ahead – and that is where I am asking for your help.
I wonder if in any suitable opportunity exists , such as public meetings or contributions to newsletters etc you would be able to mention the show and solicit support from the public in and around Ayrshire. A flower show has been part of Ayr’s social and cultural heritage for many years and we don’t want to lose it without a fight. Your help and support toward that end would be much appreciated .
People can keep in touch via our website at : www.ayranddistrictflowershow.co.uk which contains information that we are building on all the time or, if they wish to talk directly to someone directly, they can call our information line 07581810968.
Chair : Ayr & District Flower Show
Tel : 01292 441482
Mob : 07799477895