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Ely Catherdral


Ely Cathedral's long awaited Flower Festival returns this week. Over 100 specialist floral designers and several large scale props are starting to descend on the building for the opening of Kaleidoscope of Life on Thursday which is expected to be one of the region's largest events.

The Festival's creative Director is Chelsea gold medal winner, Roger Woolnough. Roger has overall responsibility for coordinating more than 50,000 blooms to create 100 spectacular exhibits with the help of flower experts from 35 Flower Guilds from across the eastern region. Highlights will include a magnificent water feature, a floral arch the length of Ely's impressive Nave (third longest of any UK Cathedral) and an 8 metre wide 'kaleidoscope' of flowers positioned in splendour directly under Ely's famous Octagon tower.

One of the most high profile props being used is a life size steel sculpture of a horse by British artist, Tom Hiscocks. This particular piece of art is central to a very special display in the North Transept to commemorate the centenary of the end of the First World War. Tom's sculpture, Free Movement (2017), can be seen in the North Transept alongside a devotional wall where visitors to the festival are invited to place a flower on the wall in memory of someone.

A spokesperson for the Cathedral commented "We are all very excited about the opening of the Flower Festival. This particular event is the result of over a year in planning and design and, with over 11,000 presold tickets, we are anticipating a very inspiring and busy few days ".

Throughout the four day event there will be musical performances, talks and demonstrations by floral experts, delicious food & drink outlets and a bespoke Gift & Craft Marquee located in the Cathedral grounds.

TV presenter and gardening expert, Diarmuid Gavin, will special guest at the preview evening on 20 June and tickets have already sold out.

Ely Cathedral Flower Festival runs from 21 - 24 June 2018. Further information including advanced tickets, opening times, special events, and travel arrangements is available on the website or by calling the Box Office on 01353 660349.


For further information contact Director of Communications, Lesley Ann Thompson 07930 918885.

Image - Tom Hiscocks Sculpture Free Movement - 2017 arrives in the North Transept of Ely Cathedral.

Ely Cathedral Image Library

Notes to the Editor

Ely Cathedral

Highly regarded by historians and architects from all over the world for its beauty and size, Ely Cathedral is widely acknowledged as 'one of the wonders of the Medieval world'. Visible for miles around, the Cathedral is often referred to as 'The Ship of the Fens'.

The present building dates from 1081 and is a remarkable example of both Romanesque and Norman architecture. In addition to its unique Octagon Tower and magnificent Lady Chapel, Ely has the third longest nave of any UK Cathedral. The Cathedral's role today is not so far removed from its days as a Benedictine monastery and offers regular daily worship with a special emphasis on choral music. It still maintains a resident choir of 22 choristers and 6 lay clerks and so continues the tradition of choral evensong every day of the week during term time.

As well as being a major visitor attraction, the Cathedral serves as a cultural focal point for East Anglia by providing a unique venue for the arts & music, for exhibitions, lectures, concerts and theatre. Most recently Ely has gained global recognition a prominent film location including Elizabeth: The Golden Age, The Other Boleyn Girl, Macbeth, The King's Speech and The Crown.