GALLERY: Ely Cathedral Flower Festival: Our photographer takes a sneak preview

Fabulous colourful blooms fill the Ship of the Fens.

Fabulous colourful blooms fill the Ship of the Fens. - Credit: Archant

THOUSANDS of colourful blooms have been arranged by a team of expert flower arrangers in Ely Cathedral this week, ready for the mammoth flower festival that opens on Thursday.

King of all he surveys: creative director Roger Woolnough tries out a wicker throne constructed for

King of all he surveys: creative director Roger Woolnough tries out a wicker throne constructed for the festival. - Credit: Archant

Our photographer Steve Williams took a tour of the Ship of the Fens as last minute preparations were made for the four day extravaganza, that will attract thousands of visitors to the Ship of the Fens.

The font is the base of a stunning arrangement.

The font is the base of a stunning arrangement. - Credit: Archant

The theme of the festival is “In the Beginning,” and more than 80 classic and contemporary floral exhibits have been constructed around the medieval building, with the focal point being a 34-metre long river of water and flowers.

The cathedral has turned into a sea of colour.

The cathedral has turned into a sea of colour. - Credit: Archant

Creative director Roger Woolnough, a gold medal winner of both Chelsea and Hampton Court flower shows, said: “The biggest challenge we had to face is the vastness of the space the cathedral offers. We had to think big to have the desired impact.

An arrangement featuring a fishing boat is prepared.

An arrangement featuring a fishing boat is prepared. - Credit: Archant

“The river provides an unusual focal point and is the key feature in our depiction of the seven days of The Creation.”

A team of expert arrangers have been busy in the cathedral.

A team of expert arrangers have been busy in the cathedral. - Credit: Archant


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Outside the cathedral, marquees house a gift and craft fair, there will be daily musical entertainment in the Lady Chapel, a programme of floral demonstrations in the garden marquee, and a range of refreshments are available.

Making some final preparations.

Making some final preparations. - Credit: Archant

Tickets cost £10, which allows access for a day. Under-16s are admitted free. Tickets are available online at www.elycathedral.org or by calling the box office on 01353 660349.

An enormous palm tree makes a stunning show.

An enormous palm tree makes a stunning show. - Credit: Archant

Intricate designs help portray the theme, In the Beginning.

Intricate designs help portray the theme, In the Beginning. - Credit: Archant

A mosaic of flowers.

A mosaic of flowers. - Credit: Archant

The start of an arrangement to grace the cathedral.

The start of an arrangement to grace the cathedral. - Credit: Archant

Fruit is used as part of a contemporary arrangement.

Fruit is used as part of a contemporary arrangement. - Credit: Archant

A cherry picker is used to get flowers high above the visitors.

A cherry picker is used to get flowers high above the visitors. - Credit: Archant

Finishing touches to some of the arrangements to fiill the cathedral.

Finishing touches to some of the arrangements to fiill the cathedral. - Credit: Archant

Flower arrangers Lynda Haynes and Toby Meadows take time out from a busy day of preparations.

Flower arrangers Lynda Haynes and Toby Meadows take time out from a busy day of preparations. - Credit: Archant

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