Having revealed that its unpaid army of helpers was nominated for the prestigious Queen’s Award for Volunteering this year, Taunton Flower Show is offering local people a chance to enjoy the delights of the popular event free of charge.
For an investment of just a few hours voluntary effort over the two show days or during the build-up period, organisers are offering a free ticket worth up to £15 and the chance to discover what goes on behind the scenes of the perennial celebration of gardening, crafts and so much more.
Show Chairman, Adrian Prior-Sankey, is eager to see every local resident attend the show at least once. He told fellow show enthusiasts,
“I am amazed that at every show we have visitors who tell me they’ve lived in the area for years but didn’t realise the wealth of talent and range of entertainment on offer on their doorstep during the first weekend of August. I am challenging everyone to discover the delights on offer this year on 3 and 4 August and, if they contribute a couple of hours helping us steward or manage a small aspect of the show, we will welcome them as our guests free of charge.
“Taunton Flower Show is a great community event, attracting many thousands of local residents as well as visitors from the wider region. However, the show would not be possible without the willing help of its many volunteers. We were especially thrilled to learn that our nomination for the Queen’s Award had progressed to the final stage. The feedback from the assessor stated,
‘The nomination received for Taunton Flower Show volunteers for The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service 2018 represents a tremendous achievement for your organisation. Everyone involved, and particularly your volunteers, should feel immensely proud of the recognition that a nomination for this Award represents.
‘The work your group does for the community was very much admired by the Independent Assessment Committee.
‘Unfortunately, given the large number of nominations and the very high standards throughout, I am sorry to say that in the end Taunton Flower Show volunteers was not among those selected to receive the Award this year. However, on behalf of The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service Team, please convey to your volunteers and other staff, our warm appreciation of the excellent work they do and of the enormous benefit it represents to the local community.
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service Team are pleased to recognise the value of your work and the significance of your nomination for this Award.’”
Volunteers are at the heart of the show and have been ever since its inception in 1831. Opportunities are open for voluntary work as box office helpers, car park hosts, administration assistants, coordinators of key activities and tent stewards. Some tasks can be undertaken by the less mobile. The minimum commitment required for free admission is four hours’ work which can be spread out over more than one day.
For those who just want to come along and be entertained by the antics in the area or wonder at the creativity of growers and artists, tickets are currently on sale at a discounted price until 20 July. Full details of both offers are available on the show’s website, Taunton Visitor Centre in the Market House and Hatchers Department Store in the town centre will be able to sell tickets up to the end of the event.
Full details of the 2018 show including ticket offers and volunteering opportunities can be found online at www.tauntonfs.co.uk