Hugo, 27, wins Gold at Chelsea Flower Show

Chelsea Gold Medal winner Hugo Bugg

Chelsea Gold Medal winner Hugo Bugg - Credit: Archant

Former Woodroffe School student, from Axminster, is the youngest ever to claim a top prize at the world famous event

Hugo Bugg's gold medal winning garden design

Hugo Bugg's gold medal winning garden design - Credit: Archant

A garden designer from Axminster has become the youngest ever winner of a gold medal at the world famous Chelsea Flower Show.

Former Woodroffe School student Hugo Bugg, 27, took the prestigious award for his waterscape garden – “Embrace the Rain” - entered by the Royal Bank of Canada.

It’s aim was to illustrate global water issues while demonstrating practical solutions for home gardeners and commercial landscapes.

Hugo’s design showed how water management features which occur in nature can be replicated in bold and innovative ways. Mimicking the natural watershed, water was directed through the garden at different gradients and speeds. Drawing on inspiration from the parched effects caused by extreme global weather, the design was layered with naturally-occurring geometric patterns. The resulting angles exposed and concealed sections of the garden, enticing visitors to walk round and through the space to find out more.


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The garden also included innovative and sustainable concrete applications, showcasing a new moulding procedure and resulting in dramatic and creative surfaces.

Blues, lime-greens and yellows were predominant colours in the planting scheme including Iris bullyana, Iris robustra ‘Gerald Darby’, Euphorbia ‘Whistleberry Garnet’ and Geum ‘Lemondrops’.

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The garden showcased storm water management and alternatives to lawn and traditional paving. There was a range of trees, grasses and herbaceous perennials which to attract, give shelter to, and provide food for birds and insects.

Hugo, 27, grew up at Trinity Hill, near Axminster, where his parents still live, and he was a pupil at Woodroffe School, Lyme Regis before going on to study garden design at Falmouth University.

Now he runs an award-winning practice in Exeter - Hugo Bugg Landscapes -whose work ranges from contemporary roof terraces and urban courtyards to country gardens and public spaces.

The RBC Waterscape Garden was Hugo’s first RHS Chelsea Flower Show entry. He was previously named RHS Young Designer of the Year in 2010 and his designs have won gold at several top shows .

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