Home Gardening news Chelsea Flower Show 2021’s extra day due to reduced visitor numbers

Chelsea Flower Show 2021’s extra day due to reduced visitor numbers

Green Switch by Kazuyuki Ishihara. Picture; RHS/Tim Sandall
Green Switch by Kazuyuki Ishihara. RHS Chelsea 2019. Picture; RHS/Tim Sandall

Members’ tickets for all 4 RHS shows go on sale on Monday, October 26 at 10am

A new-look but real rather than virtual Chelsea Flower Show has been revealed for 2021 but with some major changes, including reduced visitor numbers over more days to keep everyone safe due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The RHS event, sponsored by M&G, now includes social distancing measures, fewer guests, and – for the first time in its 108-year history – increasing the number of days from five to six, from Tuesday, May 18 to Sunday, May 23.

Visitor numbers have been reduced to 140,000 over six days, compared to 168,500 over five days in 2019.

Tickets will be available to RHS members on Monday, October 26 at 10am before being released to the general public on Friday, October 30.

Raymond J Evison stand at RHS Chelsea in 2017. Picture; RHS/Luke MacGregor
Raymond J Evison stand at RHS Chelsea in 2017. Picture; RHS/Luke MacGregor

New safety measures

  • Socially distanced queuing
  • Extra parking/park and ride
  • Enhanced cleaning and waste disposal
  • Cashless payments where possible
  • Changes to layout and monitoring of visitors to reduce crowding in popular areas
  • Track and trace check-in, led by the latest guidance
  • Restaurants will also be made more open with spaced seating and table service.

Sue Biggs, RHS Director-General, said: “We plan our shows 18 months in advance and have been planning and researching how to open 2021 RHS Chelsea safely and securely for our visitors, partners and exhibitors since April this year.

“Whilst we continue to live in uncertain times and May is a long way off, we believe these measures will mean we can safely run the show.

“We will of course be ready to react to any Government advice and if we sadly need to, will offer anyone who has booked a ticket a full refund.”

Hillier's 2017 RHS Chelsea exhibit. Picture; RHS/Sarah Cuttle
Hillier’s 2017 RHS Chelsea exhibit. Picture; RHS/Sarah Cuttle

‘Confident in our plans’

Helena Pettit, Director of RHS Shows and Gardens, said: “We’ve consulted with the emergency services and all safety stakeholders involved with Chelsea Flower Show and everyone is confident in our plans and happy with the work we have done.

“Alongside the additional Covid safety measures, in-ground daily numbers will be reduced and we are pleased to have been able to add an extra day.”

For those who can’t get tickets, there will be increased inspirational content online and through BBC coverage.

Sue Biggs will be a guest on BBC Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time on Friday, October 30 to reveal more about next year’s show.

Normandy Veterans D-Day Revisited Garden. Picture; RHS/Suzanne Plunkett
Normandy Veterans D-Day Revisited Garden. RHS Chelsea 2019. Picture; RHS/Suzanne Plunkett

How and when to buy RHS show tickets

Tickets go on sale to RHS members for all four shows – Malvern Spring, Chelsea, Hampton Court Palace and Tatton Park on Monday, October 26 at 10am.

Book early and save on tickets with an Early Bird offer for RHS Malvern Spring, Hampton Court Palace and Tatton Park. Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Friday, October 30.

  • RHS Malvern Spring Festival: May 5-9, 2021.
  • RHS Chelsea Flower Show: May 18-23, 2021, Members’ Days May 18-19.
  • RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival: July 5-11, 2021; Preview Evening July 5, Members’ Days July 6-7.
  • RHS Flower Show Tatton Park: July 21-25, 2021; Members’ Day July 21.

For more information, visit www.rhs.org.uk/shows-events.

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