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The Prince of Wales invites you to A Garden party To Make A Difference

Story by Jack Foley

THE Prince of Wales is joining forces with musicians, comedians, environmental experts and some of Britain’s best known companies to create a unique festival in the heart of London this summer.

The Prince is opening up his own gardens at Clarence House, together with his neighbours’ gardens at Lancaster House and Marlborough House, this September for a series of events named A Garden Party To Make A Difference’.

Offering a rare opportunity to visit these historic gardens, the event will last for 12 days, from September 8 to 19, 2010, and will be open from 10am to 6pm daily.

There will be a timed entry at hourly intervals with final admission at 4pm. Tickets are on-sale today from www.startuk.org or by calling 0844 248 5052.

A Garden Party To Make A Difference is an imaginative part of The Prince of Wales’s ‘Start’ initiative launched in February.

The event aims to give people of all ages a fun day out while at the same time, via the exhibits, demonstrating the small steps that can, and are, being taken by all of us, interested in building a more sustainable future.

The Prince of Wales said today: “I’m delighted to be able to welcome visitors into my gardens, and those of my immediate neighbours, for this exciting festival. We have a fantastic team of talented curators who are helping us create an event which will, I hope, be both fun and informative.

“This festival is just one way in which Start can help to demonstrate how we can all make a difference, however big or small the steps we take.”

The 12-day Garden Party, in the heart of London, will be an intriguing blend of exhibitions, interactive displays, fun activities and live performances throughout the day from comedians, musicians and speakers.

Each area of the Garden Party will be curated by a celebrity champion.

These include:

Musical Programme created by Jools Holland
Debate by Jonathan Dimbleby, Sanjeev Bhaskar & Clive Anderson
Comedy by Marcus Brigstocke and Hugh Dennis
Growing and Gardens by Alan Titchmarsh
Food and The Great Outdoors by Kate Humble
Ecocars by Roger Saul and Kevin McCloud
Fashion by Dame Vivienne Westwood

Sanjeev Bhaskar said: “I am very pleased to be involved with ‘Start’. Having witnessed creative approaches to sustainability in Africa and India, where in most cases it is an essential part of life, it seems only right that we adopt similar attitudes here.

“Very often this equates not just to common ecological sense but also financial sense too. ‘Start’ essentially gives us more control over our own lives by giving us fresh (and sometimes forgotten) ways of making our resources go further. Good news for our environment and good news for our pockets!”

A Garden Party To Make a Difference is being supported by some of the biggest brands and household names, such as Addison Lee, Asda, B&Q, BT Group, EDF Energy, IBM UK and Ireland, M&S, Virgin Money and Waitrose.

IBM will convene a nine day summit, ‘The IBM Summit at Start’, for business and industry leaders from 8 to 16 September at Lancaster House.

The aim of the Summit will be to stimulate discussion on the initiatives that companies can take around economic, environmental and societal sustainability.

Visitors to A Garden Party To Make a Difference will be able to:

  • Step into the future with displays and interactive exhibitions about cutting edge green technologies and ideas.
  • Visit three fascinating gardens in the heart of London, including The Prince of Wales’ own vegetable patch and rose garden.
  • Design and sew bags from recycled materials and display them.
  • Taste food and learn cooking tips from some of the country’s top food experts.
  • Listen to comedians, musicians and speakers on a rolling performance programme on two different stages.
  • Visit over 100 displays and exhibitions.

Tickets, priced £15 for adults and £7.50 for children, are on sale from 9am today (June 1, 2010).

Tickets are timed for purposes of entrance only. Full details are available on the Garden Party website www.startuk.org

Further details about the exhibitions and programming will be announced over the next few weeks.