The rain that had been hanging around for most of the previous week did nothing to dampen the success of Picnic in the Gardens – the first major fundraising event organised in the Gardens by the Friends. The Castle was the backdrop to a magical event that attracted more than 250 “guests”.

The evening was hosted hilariously by Circus Besurkus, and featured entertainment by jazz band Speakeasy and classical guitarist Alison Smith. Dee Holdsworth organised an exhibition of paintings by Shaldon artists in the castle, Alec Collyer proved to be an exceptional salesman for the raffle, and a picture donated by the artist Dee Holdsworth was sold in a nailbiting auction.

As well as an enjoyable evening, the event provided more than £1800 to be used by the Friends in maintaining and improving the Gardens. Thanks to Alec Collyer and his team for organising the event, and hoping that there will be many more in the future!

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