TWO Winchester gardening groups teamed up to put on the city's first horticultural show since lockdown began.

St Cross Garden Society twinned with Stanmore Gardening Club to host the event at the parish hall in Back Street.

Lots of planning had gone in to preparing a show that could keep everyone socially distanced and which abided by all coronavirus regulations.

Pip Billington told the Chronicle: "There were no flower or cookery classes but fruit and vegetables, craft and photography were all able to go ahead and 46 people entered including ten children.

"Visitors were able to process through a one way system using both rooms of the hall and enjoy the beautiful displays of all the produce created during lockdown.

"This year saw a bumper crop of fruit and vegetables including giant onions from Stuart Godding as well as some spectacular produce in the 'Basket of Fruit', Vegetables and Herbs Ready for the Kitchen' class. "The photography classes offered plenty of scope for all our budding photographers and the craft classes saw unusually high entries. Although we were unable to hand out any of our trophies this year, the highest number of points were won by Myrtle Cunningham, first, Annie Miller, second and Clare Dixon, third."

President of the St Cross Garden Society, John Pringle, also put on a display of English apple varieties.

The vegetables judge Bob Sawyer said it was the only show he knew to be running in this part of Hampshire.

Ms Billington added: "The show was a joyful celebration of people’s creativity during this horrible lockdown period.

"If any readers would like to join the society (as well as the annual show there are monthly talks which are continuing on Zoom until we can gather together again at the Carroll Youth Centre) please email

"You do not need to live in St Cross or Stanmore to join."