9 Billion Conversation Garden wins Chelsea Gold

A garden created by a partnership between Business in the Community's Start campaign and Willmott Whyte has won a much sought after Chelsea Flower Show Gold Medal.

We are thrilled to be nominated as Willmott’s Whyte’s charity of choice. The Conversation Garden at Chelsea encourages people to think, contemplate and be inspired about the positive aspects of life and importantly how to maintain them. It makes perfect sense that the garden has a sustainable future too – which is why we are thrilled that it will give something positive back to the wider community after the show has ended.

- Joey Tabone,
Director, Start
The 9 Billion Conversation Garden was designed by Willmott Whyte, a landscape gardening practice specialising in environmentally and ecologically sound garden designs.  Its elements represent the "lifelong conversation between business and communities regarding sustainability", including a grass ampitheatre representing the gathering of society, and three multistemmed trees symbolising business, community and the individual.  Two pools invite social interaction and reflection.

Watch a piece on the Garden on the BBC iPlayer.

Inspired by land art, the garden is also intended to show that innovative design doesn't have to rely on hard landscaping, and can fit in small and urban garden spaces. 

After the Show is over, The Conversation Garden will be moved to a permanent home with three community groups in Tottenham, North London.  Start and Willmott Whyte hope that this will inspire other participants to give show gardens life after Chelsea.

For more information about the Garden, see the Chelsea Flower Show website, or download a flyer.

During the whole of May, Start are running Be the Start month, with over forty businesses joining together to support and inspire people towards more sustainable lifestyles. Find out more.