Chelsea Fringe – celebrating grassroots gardening

The Chelsea Fringe, the alternative garden festival returning for its ninth year in 2020, has announced its dates with a call for participants to sign up to take part.

The Fringe will run for nine days this year, from Saturday 16th to Sunday 24th May, with hundreds of events expected to take place across London, the UK and worldwide in what has become the world’s fastest-growing Fringe festival.

Festival director, Tim Richardson, points out that every year the Fringe turns up new and amazing events that surprise and delight visitors: “That’s because we are a true Fringe festival in that we do not commission or curate, but accept all comers and steer with a light touch“, he says.

Tim adds that basically they never turn down event ideas as long as it is on topic, legal, quirky and original with the result that the festival is constantly evolving, reflecting the diversity of the people and communities who are passionate about gardens, growing and the green outdoors.

Since its inception in 2011, the independent, unfunded and volunteer-run Fringe has now seen more than 1,700 events created for the festival with gardening and plants remaining at the heart of the Fringe. Contributors and venues have included community gardening groups, public parks, artists, poets, chefs, galleries, schools and major institutions such as Kew, the Inner Temple, the Natural History Museum and Covent Garden Flower Market.

What is also exciting is that despite its name the festival now reaches well beyond Chelsea and London – to the far corners of the UK and around the world. Events in past years have taken place on the Isle of Mull, in Margate, Leeds, and Bristol. The event’s global appeal has been underlined by enthusiastic participants signing up in Sweden, Poland, Italy, Australia and Japan!

The Chelsea Fringe is now inviting individuals and organisations, first-timers and Fringe veterans, to contact us at outlining what they propose to do as part of the 2020 festival programme. Formal registration continues until the end of the Fringe, but potential event organisers are encouraged to make contact as soon as possible in order to make the most of the promotional potential that taking part brings.

Fringe logo ©Chelsea Fringe; middle: XR Tree Planting ©and credit Chris Smith

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