The Yorkshire inspiration behind the Chelsea Garden of the Decade

A garden inspired by the Yorkshire Dales and created by a Yorkshire designer has been chosen by Chelsea Flower Show viewers as the best of the decade.

The horticultural showcase, which went digital this year, culminated in the competition which pitched all the winners of the BBC RHS People’s Choice Award gardens over the past ten years, to find the public’s favourite.

The 2018 Welcome to Yorkshire garden, designed by Mark Gregory and constructed with Landform Consultants, was announced as the winner during delayed BBC transmission as part of virtual Chelsea.

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The garden, which took a gold medal and the Best Construction award as well as the BBC RHS People’s Choice Award back in 2018, represents a Wensleydale cheese-maker’s cottage garden set in the Yorkshire Dales.

Mark Gregory, who was born and brought up in East Cowick designed 2018 Welcome to Yorkshire Chelsea garden which was voted the best of the decade in a public vote.

Mr Gregory, who was born and bred in West Cowick, East Yorkshire created his first Chelsea garden in 1988. In the 2018 garden he showcased a buttercup meadow, woodland edge with native trees, vegetable patch, herbaceous perennials and wildflowers.

The design celebrated Yorkshire’s artisan food production, traditional crafts and natural materials, with stone loaned from the Bolton Estate. The stone bothy was converted into a craftsman’s creamery with artisan cheese production taking place during the 2018 show. The garden also famously featured cow pats and scraps of wool left by passing sheep.

Carl Lis, chairman of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority said it was “thrilled” that Wensleydale had been the inspiration for the BBC RHS People’s Choice Award from the last decade.

“Huge congratulations to the very talented Mark Gregory, his team, and all at Welcome to Yorkshire. This shows the value of promoting Yorkshire on the biggest stages, showcasing to the world what we have to offer.”

The garden was voted the best of the decade in a public vote during this year's 'virtual' Chelsea Flower Show

The Yorkshire Dales inspired garden was not Mr Gregory’s only entry into the top ten of People’s Choice winners with his 2019 Welcome to Yorkshire garden also featuring.

Mr Gregory initially studied at Askham Bryan College before training at RHS Wisley. He has personally designed five show gardens at Chelsea, winning gold medals for four.

Speaking at the time of creating the 2018 Welcome to Yorkshire garden, which marked his 30th year at the show, Mr Gregory said: “What better way to celebrate than with a return to designing a garden for the place that shaped me as a person. People who know me, know how proud I am of my roots.”

Go to to see a timelapse video of the garden being built.