After much consultation and amid great heartache, the uncertainty of the restrictions associated with COVID-19 has forced the Committee of Management of the Castlemaine and District Festival of Gardens to make the decision to cancel the 2020 Festival, due to take place across the Melbourne Cup week.
In announcing the cancellation, Peter Morris, chair of the Committee says, ‘The Committee is deeply disappointed that, because of the Coronavirus, we have to cancel the Festival for 2020. The Committee greatly appreciates the goodwill and support of those who open their gardens. Without such goodwill and positive assistance, it would have been impossible to hold each Festival.’
It is thought that some gardens may open at the time planned for the 2020 Festival; mainly rural gardens where social distancing is easier to achieve. As a gesture of goodwill, the Committee resolved that, whilst not under the auspices of the Festival, it would assist those gardeners who open independently by way of promotions on the Festival website and other digital channels. This is seen as a way in which recognition can be given to the much-valued contribution of these gardeners.
There are plans for committee member, Geoff Hocking, to produce an information sheet detailing those gardens who choose to open, including maps. It is also proposed that a ‘virtual tour’ of the gardens which planned to open this year will be produced and shared on the Festival website and social channels.
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