The coronavirus pandemic continues to force some of our favourite yearly events to close down, in order to keep the public safe and follow rules correctly. Last week it was announced that Glastonbury would be cancelled for a second year running, for example, and The Queen has even had to call off her yearly garden parties once more.
So it may come as no surprise to learn that plans for the 2021 Chelsea Flower Show have had to be altered again. However, unlike last year when the event was cancelled entirely, in 2021 it has just been moved to later on in the year. Instead of its usual May timetable, it will now take place in September for the first time in its long history.
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) announced that they would be moving the show to later in the year, as it is currently unknown what the situation will be in May, including what ‘tier’ London may be in. The decision has also been made due to the current high numbers of Covid cases, and the worrying infection rate. In September, they say, millions more will be vaccinated against the virus, and numbers will hopefully have significantly dropped.
Having the show in Autumn will of course affect the overall aesthetic of the event, with differing Autumnal colours and a chillier feel.
The show this year will follow a slightly different format, running over six days rather than five, and inviting 140,000 guests, rather than around 168,500; the number that attended in 2019.
If you’d been looking forward to attending, the RHS have said they will be in touch with ticket holders soon, and not to contact them in the meantime due to the thousands of visitors they are having to speak with.
You can also still ‘attend’ in May with a virtual event being held just like last year. This will run from 18th May to the 23rd May, and presumably should follow a similar format to 2020’s online event.