Sunny weather helped draw crowds to popular spring fair

After a seven-week postponement, the Isle of Wight Spring Art & Garden Fair, sponsored by Red Funnel, finally took place at Northwood House and Park in Cowes last weekend.

Despite black clouds and spots of rain on the Saturday morning, warm and sunny conditions developed, making it a perfect weekend for visiting a spring event.

Visitors were greeted by more than one hundred exhibitors, with a huge array of plants and art on display from across the Island and the mainland. The Island Art Showcase inside Northwood House was crammed full of the best local artists and even included free art lessons where visitors could get a crash course in sketching and painting.

Gardening-mad Islanders enjoyed the high-quality selection of plants on display, including RHS gold medal-winning nursery Hardy’s Cottage Plants from Hampshire, who made a pitstop on their way to exhibit at the Chelsea Flower Show this week.

Nursery owner, Rob Hardy, said: “We love coming over to Northwood House. We find the Island people so friendly and accommodating and they really seem to appreciate the quality of plants that we bring over every year. The change of date nearly meant that we couldn’t attend, due to our Chelsea commitments, but we are very keen to support the efforts of Northwood House Charitable Trust and made sure we could be here.”

Visitors were also treated to entertaining displays by the Adam’s Axeman and local magician, David Randini, amongst others. The latest electric cars from Island dealerships were on display along with vintage cars and tractors. Chainsaw sculpture artist, Paul Sivell, entertained the crowds by carving a sculpture from a tree-trunk of some mischievous red squirrels which raised over £1,600 at auction, with half the proceeds generously donated back to Northwood House.