A NEW two-day flower festival is to take place in the region for the first time.

The Durham Flower Festival will be held over the weekend of August 30-31, with events taking place at venues across the city.

Organisers say the decision to stage the festival follows the closure of the annual Gateshead Flower Show, last held in 2012, which attracted thousands of visitors before its cancellation due to council budget cuts.

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The festival will be based in the grounds of East Durham College’s Houghall Campus, with other events taking place in Durham Cathedral and Crook Hall and Gardens.

There will be a range of trade and amateur competitions over the two days, including fauna and flora, fruit and veg, food and art.

Show secretary Dianne Weir, events coordinator with East Durham College, said: “This is an incredibly exciting event to be working on and we are so pleased to be hosting a large flower show for the region at our Houghall Campus.

“Since the decision was taken by Gateshead Council to stop running the Gateshead Flower Show we have been determined to set up a new flower show for the region.

“From talking to various horticultural and floral societies and people in the trade there is certainly an audience out there for this type of event and it’s being really well supported.

“We are sure it will be a massive success and eventually grow into a nationally renowned horticultural and floral event.”