DeSigns Help Harrogate International Partnerships Celebrate Harrogate’s Four International Links at the 2023 Spring Flower Show.

DeSigns were asked by Harrogate International Partnerships (HIP), to help bring to life Jan Greaves designs, to create bespoke signage for their Spring Flower Show Community Garden. The Community Garden is just one of the ways HIP is celebrating the links Harrogate has with four towns and cities across the world.

For those who don’t know, Harrogate shares a special type of ‘twinning’ relationship with Wellington, the capital of New Zealand, and has done so since 1953.

Some years after the end of the Second World War, the people of Harrogate recognised the international importance of the Commonwealth War Graves cemetery at Stonefall on Wetherby Road.

During this time, a ‘New Zealand Garden’ was created to honour the 23 New Zealand Air Force aircrew (Four of them from Wellington) who were buried at Stonefall. The garden, which was created in 1953, still stands to this day within the Valley Gardens.

To mark the 70th anniversary of the gardens being created, the newly refurbished New Zealand Garden will be reopened in the Valley Gardens. HIP will welcome Flight Lieutenant Dan Channon of the Royal New Zealand Air Force, as chief guest to the grand opening. A new sculpture, bench, and interpretation board will also be unveiled.

Not only does Harrogate share international links with New Zealand, but it also has links with Bagnères de Luchon in France (70th anniversary), Montecatini Terme in Italy (60th anniversary), and Barrie in Canada (10th anniversary).

The signage we were asked to help create and implement for HIP’s Community Garden, aims to raise awareness of the work Harrogate International Partnerships undertakes to continue the legacy of ‘Twinning’.

It seeks to promote educational (language, history), recreational (sport, art, music), and cultural links between Harrogate and its twin towns/cities.

The 5m x 5m garden has at its centre an obelisk, a 14ft, four-sided model of the Harrogate ‘Cenotaph monument’. Our signage has been mounted onto each facia of the obelisk to represent a country and the town/city with which Harrogate is twinned.

We also created signage that included the national flag of each country which was then mounted at the base of the obelisk.

The signage that we helped bring to life perfectly represents each country through the fun, vibrant and eye-catching design which will help draw attendees to the Community Garden, something the judges seemed to agree with too, as they awarded the Community Garden the Gold Award for Best Display!

We feel honoured to have been asked by Harrogate International Partnerships to work with them and Jan Greaves on such a special project.