A florist from Bramley is celebrating after reaching the semi-finals of the prestigious Florist of the Year competition. Elizabeth Newcombe, who owns and runs The Botanical Company, will now face off against nine other professional florists this Sunday (April 24) at RHS Bridgewater in Manchester.
Elizabeth progressed through the competition’s heats, where she created a hand-tied bouquet, an arrangement and a body adornment under the theme ‘Inspired by Nature’. The theme for the semi-final is ‘Growing Together’, and will involve creating three floral designs under strict competition conditions, including a surprise design about which no details will be revealed until the day.
Only five of the ten semi-finalists will reach the final, and the overall winner will represent Great Britain and Ireland at the Interflora World Cup. That tournament will be held in the UK for the first time ever in September 2023.
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Elizabeth has been a florist for nine years, having trained at Merrist Wood College. She has already successfully competed in numerous professional floristry competitions including World Skills and at RHS Chelsea Flower Show, where she won a Gold medal and was crowned Young Chelsea Florist of the Year in 2019.
She said: “I built up my small business and opened the shop doors just before COVID-19 happened, so it’s been a pretty tough couple of years. Lots of competitions and events got cancelled, but when I heard about the Florist of the Year competition, I felt that determination and adrenaline come back again. I’ve really missed competing and I can’t wait to be back in a competition booth!”
Interflora has been running and promoting floristry competitions since the early 1970s. Its competitions have produced several World Cup winners over the years, as well as many worthy finalists.