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Prince William and Kate Middleton pay visit to gold medal winner at Chelsea Flower Show - grown in Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 14:32 21 May 2019 | UPDATED: 08:30 23 May 2019

Landscape designer Alistair Bayford, right, who designed the award-winning Family Monsters garden, created in Swaffham, shows the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate, the garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY ACTION

Landscape designer Alistair Bayford, right, who designed the award-winning Family Monsters garden, created in Swaffham, shows the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate, the garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY ACTION

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A garden created in Norfolk to highlight the problems families face has won a gold medal at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

Forty participants, volunteers and staff from Swaffham's Escape allotments visited the Chelsea flower show to see the Family Monsters garden.  GINGER HORTICULTUREForty participants, volunteers and staff from Swaffham's Escape allotments visited the Chelsea flower show to see the Family Monsters garden. GINGER HORTICULTURE

And the Family Monsters Garden, partly made at Swaffham's Escape community allotment run by the charity Family Action, was also named the show's 'best artisan garden'.

Designer Alistair Bayford said everyone involved in the project was thrilled with the accolades.

Mr Bayford said: "Bringing this garden to Chelsea has been a real privilege. I'm ecstatic that we've won a gold medal and have been awarded best artisan garden - there's no feeling like it.

"It's important that we all talk more about the pressures our families face, and it's been a great experience for the 22 apprentices who've helped build the Family Monsters Garden alongside the team from Family Action's project in Swaffham."

Landscape designer Alistair Bayford, who designed the award-winning Family Monsters garden, created in Swaffham, with a gold award presented to the project at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY ACTIONLandscape designer Alistair Bayford, who designed the award-winning Family Monsters garden, created in Swaffham, with a gold award presented to the project at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY ACTION

Among those who have already seen the garden at the flower show, which begins today (May 21), were the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who were shown around it by Mr Bayford.

The garden celebrates 150 years of the national charity Family Action supporting families across the country and 100 years of Idverde, which creates and maintains landscapes such as parks and gardens for the benefit of communities. Mr Bayford and Idverde did most of the work on the garden, which encourages people to reflect on their pressures and 
to bring families together. The space is full of symbolism, such as trees with obvious imperfections to convey how families can grow together after tackling challenges.

There are also boulders and pebbles of different shapes and sizes to represent different family monsters, which become smaller when we talk about them.

David Holmes, Family Action's chief executive, said: "Every family has its monsters and we've been helping families deal with their pressures for 150 years. We hope this wonderful garden, which is full of symbolism, will encourage families to come together and talk about their family monsters.

Escape Project co-ordinator Katy Fullilove at the Swaffham allotment earlier this year, with honey and wild garlic being prepared for the Family Monsters garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYEscape Project co-ordinator Katy Fullilove at the Swaffham allotment earlier this year, with honey and wild garlic being prepared for the Family Monsters garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

"The more we do so, the better we can all face the challenges of life together, rather than pretending everything is okay. We all have everyday problems in our families that, like the boulders representing family monsters, can become more manageable simply by talking."

MORE: Chelsea Flower Show garden design shows how we can work together to beat 'family monsters'.

Escape Project participants, Dave Crow, left, and Ollie Brunton, bodging on pole lathes earlier this year at the workshop at their allotment at Swaffham, as part of the work on the Family monsters garden for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYEscape Project participants, Dave Crow, left, and Ollie Brunton, bodging on pole lathes earlier this year at the workshop at their allotment at Swaffham, as part of the work on the Family monsters garden for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Three generations of one family in the Family Monsters garden, which was created by Family Action's Escape community allotment at Tumbler Hill in Swaffham. Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY ACTIONThree generations of one family in the Family Monsters garden, which was created by Family Action's Escape community allotment at Tumbler Hill in Swaffham. Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY ACTION

Alistair Bayford, garden designer, with Karen Bek, Escape Project co-ordinator, at the Escape Project allotment at Swaffham where they created the Family Monsters garden for the Chelsea Flower Show.  Picture: DENISE BRADLEYAlistair Bayford, garden designer, with Karen Bek, Escape Project co-ordinator, at the Escape Project allotment at Swaffham where they created the Family Monsters garden for the Chelsea Flower Show. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

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