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St Albans Cathedral ‘Music in Bloom’ Flower Festival 2014

For the first time in 12 years, St Albans Cathedral is to host a spectacular Flower Festival this September. The ‘Music in Bloom’ Festival will transform every inch of the building into a stunning oasis of colour and music.

The four-day event from 25th-28th September is expected to be one of the biggest in the region this year, attracting an anticipated 15,000 visitors to the city. Hundreds of beautiful and imaginative flower displays will clothe the ancient stones – from delicate posies to majestic designs that scale the heights of the Cathedral nave.

The arrangements will be themed on musical titles of every genre - classical pieces from Vivaldi, Handel and Holst will take their place alongside modern classics from Adele, Abba, and Elton John. Visitors can enjoy seeing hymns, nursery rhymes, songs from the musicals and famous film theme tunes come to life in what promises to be a feast for all the senses. A programme of live music throughout the Festival will add to the unique atmosphere.

Chair of the Flower Festival Committee, Liz Semple, commented, "We have a cast of hundreds working hard to deliver a wonderful event. Our Artistic Director, Jackie Scopes, and her talented team have designed an ambitious scheme that marries the beauty of the flowers with much loved musical pieces and popular songs. We hope to be welcoming visitors from far and wide and, above all, we want them to have a fun day out so we have planned a Festival which appeals to everyone, not just to those with a particular interest in flowers. Come along and be entertained, amazed and delighted!"

The Dean of St Albans Cathedral, the Very Reverend Jeffrey John, said, "Cathedral worship is about trying to offer God the best of everything. Flowers are a big part of the symphony of the senses – music, art, architecture, liturgical movement and colour, the spoken word, and even the scent of flowers and incense – which all combine to make the beauty of the Cathedral and its services.

"This is the perfect setting for what will be a magnificent Festival this September, when the combined talents of our Flower Guild and of many others throughout the diocese will fill the building with thousands of flowers designed around the theme of Music in Bloom. Expect to be dazzled and inspired by a spectacular display."

Mayor of St Albans Cllr Annie Brewster commented, "The Flower Festival programme with its exciting feast of musical themes sounds simply stunning. We could not wish for a more majestic canvas than our ancient Cathedral to display the promised oasis of flowers and I cannot wait to see some of the inspiring floral crescendos created at the end of September."

A Bouquet of Festival Facts

  • Preparations for the Festival started way back in September 2012.
  • Approximately 8,000 - 10,000 blooms will be used.
  • The largest arrangement is 18 ft tall; the smallest arrangement is the size of a teacup.
  • 132 well known pieces of music and songs will feature in the Festival displays.
  • Around 400 arrangers are involved from churches, organisations and Flower Clubs around the region.
  • Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem is at the forefront of a special area to commemorate the centenary of World War I.
  • The ‘props list’ for the Festival reads like a challenge for a team on the BBC’s Apprentice, and includes: Roman bricks, a plough, World War I uniforms, a tandem and fishing rods!

But flowers and music are not the only attraction. The Abbot’s Kitchen and the Festival Marquee will be serving home-made teas and lunches throughout the Festival. Tickets allow access to the event for the whole day, so visitors can also enjoy the shops and restaurants of   St Albans city centre which is just a few minutes’ walk away, and the beautiful parklands which surround St Albans Cathedral.

The Music in Bloom Flower Festival runs from 25th-28th September. Tickets are £10 - under 16s are free (with a paying adult). To book tickets and for more information click here or call the Box Office on 01727 890290.

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