Saffron Walden: Sisters join forces for ITV garden show programme

From left, Anne Cardwell, Helen Riches, Love Your Garden presenter Katie Rushworth and an ITV camera

From left, Anne Cardwell, Helen Riches, Love Your Garden presenter Katie Rushworth and an ITV cameraman. - Credit: Archant

TWO sisters have played a creative part in a garden makeover show to be aired on television later this month.

The ITV film crew in Helen's garden.

The ITV film crew in Helen's garden. - Credit: Archant

Newport artist Anne Cardwell was chosen to appear in the ITV programme Love Your Garden and tasked with creating a mosaic as part of a garden makeover for a woman in London.

She was selected by one of the presenters, Katie Rushworth, and after being asked if the mosaic could initially be filmed on show in her own garden, Mrs Cardwell came up with a better idea.

“I asked my sister Helen [Riches] if they could film her garden because it’s abundant with flowers and looks beautiful,” the 48 year-old said. “She’s a garden designer and the producers agreed it was the perfect setting to show off my work.”

Mrs Riches, 51, of Debden Road, Saffron Walden, is now planning to open her garden to the public this summer in a bid to raise money in memory of the pair’s friend Jan Bishop, who died of cancer two months ago.

“Telling Jan about our inclusion in this show was the last conversation I ever had with her,” Mrs Cardwell said.

“She was diagnosed last August and died at the end of April. It was lovely to have some happy and interesting news to tell her.

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“Helen actually met her through the National Garden Scheme when Jan came to view her open garden back in 2008.”

The TV programme, which also features Alan Titchmarsh as a presenter, will air on Tuesday July 23, at 8pm.

It sees Alan and his team transform the gardens of people who deserve it most. A film crew shot footage for the show in both Mrs Riches’ garden and her sister’s studio in Newport.

Mrs Cardwell chose to make a mosaic, the art of creating images with an assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, in the guise of a water feature.

Local welder Geoff Curtis came up with a base made from a wok and this was covered in a vibrant design and completed in just a few days.

Mrs Riches said: “Anne and I thoroughly enjoyed our day – it was really exciting if a little nerve wracking.

“Carol, the lady from London whose garden was transformed, thoroughly deserved a break.

“We were really happy to be involved, albeit in a very small way, in helping to make her garden happen.”

The public can visit Mrs Riches’ open garden on Sunday July 28, along with those of two other friends and garden enthusiasts. Money raised from the event will be donated to St Clare Hospice.

Details of the times and places will be available on Mrs Riches’s website closer to the time at