Stars drop in to Shrewsbury Flower Show to meet their public

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CELEBRITY chef Gino D’Acampo cooked up a treat for visitors to this year’s Shrewsbury Flower Show.

He cooked a range of dishes while taking questions from the audience on both days in the Marches Foodhall.

Italian chef Gino has been a regular on shows such as Saturday Kitchen, Ready Steady Cook and This Morning, and was crowned ‘King of the Jungle’ in I’m A Celebrity – Get Me Out Of Here! in 2009.

While demonstrating how to fry a delicious-looking lamb steak with sage and parma ham, he was bombarded with queries from fans as much fascinated with Gino himself as what he was cooking.

Some wanted to know about his time in the jungle, asking what it was like eating stinging nettles. “Not as bad as you might think,” he said, but “raw like that, I wouldn’t recommend.”

He was also asked his opinion of British cooking, to which he said he loves fish and chips, Yorkshire puddings and all kinds of pies.

Meanwhile Flower Show regular Chris Beardshaw was also busy throughout the weekend.

The Gardeners’ Question Time panellist, writer and broadcaster gave lectures and advice to keen gardeners in the lecture marquee, and showed green-fingered youngsters how to plant seeds in the children’s area.

“I think this is my fifth year,” he said. “One of the things that has undoubtedly grown is the interest in fruits and vegetables and herbs, and there’s a much more informed audience. It’s not unknown to have questions on growing things like asparagus, yams and sweet potatoes.

“People are delving into what a few years ago would have been considered exotic horticulture. There’s a real appetite for horticulture and unusual crops and practices.

“Gardeners have always been fascinated with growing something that really shouldn’t be grown in that area.

“It’s the challenge of being able to say ‘this came from my garden’.”

Chris said mushrooms were an example, with the growing of all sorts of varieties taking off over the past few years.

He said he loved the Shropshire landscape and the region was excellent for gardeners.

“It’s a very rich area for growing traditional and other types of horticulture.

“The flower show is always fun and has a great atmosphere.

“It’s always a busy couple of days.

“It has a very personal feel – it’s very relaxed, and the fireworks are getting better year on year.”

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