Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

*Due to a technical issue we’re currently experiencing with our online booking system, please contact us directly on 01768 868000 to book your tickets instead.*

Included in your show ticket is access to a fantastic range of free talks, led by national and regional experts. Whatever your project, you’ll find a source of inspiration across the weekend.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

'Locks and Latches: Design-led Home Security’ with Michael Hunt of More Handles 

Friday 13 March - 11.00am


More Handles specify and deliver over 18,000 pieces of ironmongery a week across the UK and around the world. Learn the ’tips and tricks of the trade’ to allow you to create a beautiful coordinated finish to your home with the latest trends and technology in Architectural Hardware.

Michael Hunt was part of the original team that launched More Handles in 2007. The local company has grown to be one of the largest Architectural Ironmongers in the UK. Providing a huge range of items for the DIY homeowner, through the Interior Designer market, and up to the large scale national house builders.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Paving the way to a successful garden design’ with Phil Newport from Wildroof Landscapes 

Friday 13 March - 12.00pm


Phil Newport from Wildroof Landscapes will discuss the choice of surface finishes available to the design conscious homeowner. Choosing paving always used to be so simple, but today there are so many options, it’s hard to know where to start! This presentation will offer some insight and help you understand the options most suitable for your garden.

Phil has built (and planted) hundreds of unique gardens across Cumbria and the Lake District, all with different challenges whether it be access, complexity or materials detail. His pragmatic approach and ingenuity mean that no garden transformation is off limits to the Wildroof team! 

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Home Build Question Time’ in support of the Housing Hub

Friday 13 March - 1.00pm

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Alpine Curation, Collection and Cultivation at Edinburgh Botanic Gardens’ with John Mitchell of Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh

Friday 13 March - 2.00pm


This unique talk is all about the history of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and looking at the sites, before it finally moved to Inverleith in 1820, exploring the activities that the gardens achieves.

John will also share some of the inspiring places he has visited looking at the plants in the wild, and give you a taste of life on expeditions – and show you how they try and grow them back in Edinburgh. He will also lead you on a tour of the garden looking at the world renowned rock garden, woodland garden and finish off looking behind the scenes in the alpine area and the new tufa alpine house build.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Camassia - Stars In Your Garden’ with Stella Exley of Hare Spring Cottage Plants 

Saturday 14 March - 11.00am


Stella Exley will share with you why Camassia are the art and soul of the spring garden. Their graceful beauty is perfect for a plethora of planting schemes and create a calming visual feast. Learn how to introduce Camassia into your own gardens with expert knowledge and advice from the National Collection Holder.

Stella Exley is a nurserywoman specialising in hardy plants & is the founder & owner of Hare Spring Cottage Plants based in Alne near York. She regularly exhibits in Floral Marquees at all the major horticultural shows and is the proud holder of two National Collections – Camassia & Sidalcea.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘The Art of Restoration: 40 years of Restoration and Conservation’ with Jeremy Hall of Peter Hall & Son 

Saturday 14 March - 12.00pm


From humble chairs to internationally panelled rooms, Jeremy will share a brief history of the award-winning Peter Hall & Son, and then discuss some of the ‘do’s and don’ts’ to looking after your furniture; from what to do when a favourite piece has been broken, to cleaning techniques and wax to full restoration.

Jeremy Hall started his training in 1972 at Leeds College of Art studying furniture design and making, after which he worked for Albert Jeffrey making Mouseman styled furniture. 

In 1977 he went to West Dean College to study furniture conservation and in 1979 he joined his father and started the furniture conservation side of the business. Peter Hall & Son is a full service, furniture and interior design business, specialising in bespoke, high quality and refined designs.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Flawless Finishes: Top Tips for Decorating Challenges’ with Frank Holmes of Frank Holmes Ltd Painting and Decorating

Saturday 14 March - 1.00pm


Frank will share his top decorating tips and techniques on how to deal with those problem areas, from water leak damage, damp and mildew, along with how to prepare surfaces for painting or wallpapering to produce that flawless finish!

Frank has spent the last 30 years building a successful business, providing a professional decorating service from plan conception to completion. Whether your project is a full refurbishment or a simple feature wall, a period property or more contemporary, using his extensive product knowledge and expertise, Frank can guide you through the process to achieve the finished results you’re happy with for years to come.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Gardeners’ Question Time’ chaired by Eric Robson 

Saturday 14 March - 2.00pm


We’re thrilled to announce the popular Gardeners’ Question Time is set to return, chaired by Eric Robson, formerly of BBC Radio 4. This years panel includes Chris Collins, Head of Organic Horticulture for national gardening charity, Garden Organic and former Blue Peter Gardener, James Smith of Growing Well, farm-based Mental Health charity near Kendal, Shelagh Todd, horticultural lecturer at Newton Rigg College near Penrith, and Martin Ogle, Head Gardener of Lowther Castle & Gardens.

Tickets are £3 and can be booked online with your show ticket. This year’s Gardeners Question Time is in aid of Growing Well, Mental Health charity based near Kendal. Please bring along your questions to submit prior to the session.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Identifying your Interiors Style’ with Amelia Wilson of Amelia Wilson Interiors

Saturday 14 March - 3.00pm


Do you struggle to answer the question ‘what is your interiors style?’. Don’t worry if the answer is yes as most people do! It’s often an Interior Designer’s job to help their clients determine what their preferred style is at the outset of any new project. During her talk Amelia will provide top tips on how to find your own unique style of interiors, and how to bring that vision to life in your home. 

Amelia moved to Cumbria in 2014 to set up her own Interior Design Practice and now works on projects of all shapes and sizes across the county. Many of her residential projects are complete house renovations, and recent commercial projects include Seascale Golf Club and The Kirkstile Inn at Loweswater.


Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Sowing the Seeds of Organic Gardening’ with Chris Collins of Ryton Organic Gardens 

Sunday 15 March - 11.00am


Chris will be inspiring gardeners to start growing the organic way, whether that’s beginners looking to get started, or more experienced growers keen to switch to organic practices. With his infectious passion for all things gardening, Chris will be providing practical advice and real-life examples to show visitors simple ways to grow the most sustainable way.

Chris Collins, Head of Organic Horticulture for national gardening charity, Garden Organic, has had a long and varied career in horticulture and has undertaken some of the best gardening jobs going, including Head Gardener at Westminster Abbey, and presenting at Chelsea Flower Show. Chris is probably best known for his time in the prestigious role of Blue Peter gardener.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Beautiful Bathrooms: Achieving your Vision’ with Kerrie Ellison of Alexander & Sancto

Sunday 15 March - 12.00pm


If you are looking to redesign and revamp your bathroom, or create a new one, Kerrie Ellison will share her knowledge and expertise to help you maximise the space showcasing the best layouts, select the right products, and make your ideas become a reality.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Functionality with Personality: Interior Design for your Home’ with Maureen Whitemore of Whitemore & Thwaytes Interiors, Penrith

Sunday 15 March - 1.00pm


Good design in a home is a combination of being right for purpose, looking good, feeling good and working well. Asking yourself the right questions, careful planning and a dash of inspiration are all required – Maureen will lead you through the process (from the arty farty to the nitty gritty), with lots of ideas, examples and schemes.

Maureen has spent 52 years learning about her industry and helping people to create a beautiful home be it large or small.  Her business Whitemore and Thwaytes in Penrith has a beautiful showroom where Maureen and her team of eight make home-building and home-making a pleasure, taking away the worry and making the process a joy.  From whole product coordination and lighting schemes to a single blind, bespoke furniture to wallpaper and curtains, every aspect of design is addressed with projects throughout Cumbria and beyond. Collaboration being the key, Maureen works with a huge team of professionals able to address any domestic project, taking it from conception to completion.

Cumbria Life Home and Garden Show 2020 – Talks

‘Gorgeous Gardens and Delightful Designs’ with Lyn Brunetti, Louise Stoddart and Shelagh Todd of Newton Rigg College’s Horticultural Team, Penrith 

Sunday 15 March - 2.00pm


Lyn, Louise and Shelagh will share their lifelong passions for designing, creating, maintaining and visiting beautiful gardens. The talk will combine gorgeous images of gardens, planted borders and garden designs with inspirational knowledge that you can apply to your existing gardens or a new garden venture.

Lyn Brunetti, Louise Stoddart and Shelagh Todd are part of the horticultural lecturing team at Newton Rigg College near Penrith. They all teach on our very popular Royal Horticultural Society Gardening Courses based at Newton Rigg College and Holehird Gardens (the home of The Lakeland Horticultural Society) near Windermere.