The Isle of Wight, V&A Museum and Science Museum mark major bicentenary

What’s “the best kept secret on the Isle of Wight”?

It would be interesting to see just how many hidden gems there are left to be unearthed on an Island that has been a hub of UK tourism ever since Queen Victoria first planted her summer home, Osborne House, there in 1845.  But here’s one to consider…

 Julia Margaret Cameron: one of the greatest portraitists in the history of photography; a member of a Freshwater Circle of glittering literati which gives the world famous Bloomsbury Group a run for their money; last year the subject of an exhibition in Gallery 852 of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City; and soon-to-be-featured in special exhibitions at the V&A in London and on the Isle of Wight – to mark the 200th anniversary of her birth, in 2015.

—o0o—

Dimbola Lodge, at Freshwater Bay on the Isle of Wight, was the home and workplace of this celebrated Victorian photographer.  It’s now a Museum and Gallery dedicated to her life and work, as well as a showcase for contemporary exhibitions from photographers around the globe.

This – according to the home page of the website – is the best kept secret on the Isle of Wight.

New research also shows that the pioneering Victorian Isle of Wight photographer, Julia Margaret Cameron (born June 11th, 1815), was even the inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s White Queen in Through the Looking-glass.  And a recent book, The Freshwater Circle Through The Looking-glass, by Gail Downey Middleton illustrates the connections between the bohemian Freshwater circle on the Isle of Wight, and Lewis Carroll’s famous stories.

Curiouser and curiouser, however, last year’s exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York was the first devoted to Cameron’s work in nearly a generation, and the first ever at The Met.

The Museum’s website tells the story well: “When she received her first camera in December 1863 as a gift from her daughter and son-in-law, Cameron was forty-eight, a mother of six, and a deeply religious, well-read, somewhat eccentric friend of many notable Victorian artists, poets, and thinkers.  ‘From the first moment I handled my lens with a tender ardour,’ she wrote, ‘and it has become to me as a living thing, with voice and memory and creative vigour.’  Condemned by some contemporaries for sloppy craftsmanship, she purposely avoided the perfect resolution and minute detail that glass negatives permitted, opting instead for carefully directed light, soft focus, and long exposures that allowed the sitters’ slight movement to register in her pictures, instilling them with an uncommon sense of breath and life.”

Dimbola was Cameron’s home, salon and studio for 15 years between 1860 and 1875 and was where, at the age of 48, she learned the new technology of photography and produced some of the masterpieces of 19th Century photography.  These included portraits of many of the leading figures of the Victorian age who lived in or visited Freshwater Bay, such as Alfred Lord Tennyson and Charles Darwin.

A V&A exhibition is touring internationally before and after its presentation at the V&A in London.  On show atGhentMuseum of Fine Artsuntil June 14th, it will head to the SydneyArt Gallery of New South Wales from August 14th to October 25th.  After returning to the V&A Museum in London from November 2015, to February 2016, it will then go on show at the MadridFundacion Mapfre from March 8th to May 8th, and the TokyoMitsubishi Ichigokan Museumfrom June 29th to September 25th 2016.

The nearby Science Museum in London is also set to stage its own exhibition to commemorate the bicentenary from November 2015, until Spring 2016.

On the Isle of Wight, as well as being able to follow in the footsteps of Cameron, Dimbola Museum & Galleries is planning on a full year of special exhibitions and events to give visitors a full insight into her life and work.

Exhibitions during the bicentenary year will include four, seasonal displays which – drawing on the collections of the National Media Museum in Bradford – will present images taken by Cameron at Dimbola but never before exhibited at the Museum.  The exhibitions, held in a suit of newly refurbished galleries, will explore her career from her early photographic experiments, through her famous images of the bohemian ‘Freshwater Circle’ to her late imaginative illustrations and will particularly focus on her life at Dimbola and how this shaped her work.

Alongside these new presentations work will be a series of quarterly contemporary photography exhibitions which respond to and resonate with her artistic legacy. Those remining include:

*Annie Leibovitz – Pilgrimage (25/04/15-12/07/15)

One of America’s best-known living photographers, Leibovitz images speak in a commonplace language to the photographer’s curiosity about the world she inherited, spanning landscapes both dramatic and quiet, interiors of living rooms and bedrooms, and objects that are talismans of past lives. This exhibition has been specially selected for the exhibition at Dimbola.

*Portrait of an Island: Steve Blamire and Julian Winslow (18/07/15-04/10/15)

A contemporary collection of photographic portraits that captures the Isle of Wight community at a certain point in time, which will ultimately sit as an historic documentation of the people, ideas and work of that community.

*Sunara Begum, Retracing the Eye: Journeys of Migration (10/10/15-03/01/16)

“Art for me is the thread with which we sew together our collective memories. In all my work I try to tell the story of our forever evolving identities. How we came from the root and branched out is always different….Our connection is how we go back.”  Sunara Begum is a visual artist and filmmaker whose work is perfectly placed between East and West. She uses installation, film, photography and text, and has already created her own distinct visual language and aesthetic which is imprinted in all her work.

There will also be bimonthly exhibitions of the work of local schools and community groups who will be exploring and being inspired by Julia’s work.

Further details will be found at www.visitisleofwight.co.uk.

What’s “the best kept secret on the Isle of Wight”?

 

It would be interesting to see just how many hidden gems there are left to be unearthed on an Island that has been a hub of UK tourism ever since Queen Victoria first planted her summer home, Osborne House, there in 1845.  But here’s one to consider…

 

Julia Margaret Cameron: one of the greatest portraitists in the history of photography; a member of a Freshwater Circle of glittering literati which gives the world famous Bloomsbury Group a run for their money; last year the subject of an exhibition in Gallery 852 of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City; and soon-to-be-featured in special exhibitions at the V&A in London and on the Isle of Wight – to mark the 200th anniversary of her birth, in 2015.

—o0o—

 

Dimbola Lodge, at Freshwater Bay on the Isle of Wight, was the home and workplace of this celebrated Victorian photographer.  It’s now a Museum and Gallery dedicated to her life and work, as well as a showcase for contemporary exhibitions from photographers around the globe.

 

This – according to the home page of the website – is the best kept secret on the Isle of Wight.

 

New research also shows that the pioneering Victorian Isle of Wight photographer, Julia Margaret Cameron (born June 11th, 1815), was even the inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s White Queen in Through the Looking-glass.  And a recent book, The Freshwater Circle Through The Looking-glass, by Gail Downey Middleton illustrates the connections between the bohemian Freshwater circle on the Isle of Wight, and Lewis Carroll’s famous stories.

 

Curiouser and curiouser, however, last year’s exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York was the first devoted to Cameron’s work in nearly a generation, and the first ever at The Met.

 

The Museum’s website tells the story well: “When she received her first camera in December 1863 as a gift from her daughter and son-in-law, Cameron was forty-eight, a mother of six, and a deeply religious, well-read, somewhat eccentric friend of many notable Victorian artists, poets, and thinkers.  ‘From the first moment I handled my lens with a tender ardour,’ she wrote, ‘and it has become to me as a living thing, with voice and memory and creative vigour.’  Condemned by some contemporaries for sloppy craftsmanship, she purposely avoided the perfect resolution and minute detail that glass negatives permitted, opting instead for carefully directed light, soft focus, and long exposures that allowed the sitters’ slight movement to register in her pictures, instilling them with an uncommon sense of breath and life.”

 

Dimbola was Cameron’s home, salon and studio for 15 years between 1860 and 1875 and was where, at the age of 48, she learned the new technology of photography and produced some of the masterpieces of 19th Century photography.  These included portraits of many of the leading figures of the Victorian age who lived in or visited Freshwater Bay, such as Alfred Lord Tennyson and Charles Darwin.

 

A V&A exhibition is touring internationally before and after its presentation at the V&A in London.  On show atGhentMuseum of Fine Artsuntil June 14th, it will head to the SydneyArt Gallery of New South Wales from August 14th to October 25th.  After returning to the V&A Museum in London from November 2015, to February 2016, it will then go on show at the MadridFundacion Mapfre from March 8th to May 8th, and the TokyoMitsubishi Ichigokan Museumfrom June 29th to September 25th 2016.

 

The nearby Science Museum in London is also set to stage its own exhibition to commemorate the bicentenary from November 2015, until Spring 2016.

 

On the Isle of Wight, as well as being able to follow in the footsteps of Cameron, Dimbola Museum & Galleries is planning on a full year of special exhibitions and events to give visitors a full insight into her life and work.

 

Exhibitions during the bicentenary year will include four, seasonal displays which – drawing on the collections of the National Media Museum in Bradford – will present images taken by Cameron at Dimbola but never before exhibited at the Museum.  The exhibitions, held in a suit of newly refurbished galleries, will explore her career from her early photographic experiments, through her famous images of the bohemian ‘Freshwater Circle’ to her late imaginative illustrations and will particularly focus on her life at Dimbola and how this shaped her work.

 

Alongside these new presentations work will be a series of quarterly contemporary photography exhibitions which respond to and resonate with her artistic legacy. Those remining include:

*Annie Leibovitz – Pilgrimage (25/04/15-12/07/15)

One of America’s best-known living photographers, Leibovitz images speak in a commonplace language to the photographer’s curiosity about the world she inherited, spanning landscapes both dramatic and quiet, interiors of living rooms and bedrooms, and objects that are talismans of past lives. This exhibition has been specially selected for the exhibition at Dimbola.

*Portrait of an Island: Steve Blamire and Julian Winslow (18/07/15-04/10/15)

A contemporary collection of photographic portraits that captures the Isle of Wight community at a certain point in time, which will ultimately sit as an historic documentation of the people, ideas and work of that community.

*Sunara Begum, Retracing the Eye: Journeys of Migration (10/10/15-03/01/16)

“Art for me is the thread with which we sew together our collective memories. In all my work I try to tell the story of our forever evolving identities. How we came from the root and branched out is always different….Our connection is how we go back.”  Sunara Begum is a visual artist and filmmaker whose work is perfectly placed between East and West. She uses installation, film, photography and text, and has already created her own distinct visual language and aesthetic which is imprinted in all her work.

 

There will also be bimonthly exhibitions of the work of local schools and community groups who will be exploring and being inspired by Julia’s work.

  1. Dimbola Museum and Galleries (exterior), © Jake Priddle

 

The bicentenary of Julia Margaret Cameron

Celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Julia Margaret Cameron…..

A sample itinerary for any media visiting The Isle of Wight who might like to “follow in the footsteps” of this famous Victorian pioneer photographer who lived and worked at Dimbola Lodge,

Freshwater became ‘home’ to a host of artists, writers, and intellectuals who regularly visited the Tennyson and the Cameron residences on the Isle of Wight.  The photographer Reginald Southey visited in 1857, followed by Charles Dodson (Lewis Carroll) in 1862, and Oscar Rejlander in 1863, who photographed both families and probably also worked on compositions with Cameron.

In her 15 years of work after the acquisition of her own camera, she would discuss practical and artistic matters pertaining to her photographic career with her friends from these circles – including the painter/photographer David Wynfield Wilkie, the sculptor and painter G.F. Watts, Poet Laureate Alfred Lord Tennyson, Herschel, Taylor and Cole.

Other famous Victorians who lived nearby or made visits to Dimbola or Farringford include the Pre-Raphaelite painter William Holman Hunt and the English stage actress and wife of Watts, Ellen Terry.

Pioneer photographer Julia Margaret Cameron made figure studies of Pre-Raphaelite types – girls in flowing dresses with long hair, looking melancholy.  Her photographs of Ellen Terry can be viewed at Dimbola Lodge photographic museum at Freshwater Bay.

Today’s visitors to the Isle of Wight can also see some of the works and influences of the Pre-Raphaelite brotherhood at churches and other buildings across the Island.

Itinerary:

Day 1

Travel from Lymington to Yarmouth (or from Southampton/Portsmouth).  Return car ferry provided by either Wightlink or Red Funnel.

Arrive Isle of Wight.

Visit Dimbola Museum & Galleries, Freshwater Bay.

The former home of the pioneering Victorian photographer Julia Margaret Cameron now houses the largest public collection in the UK of Cameron’s photographs and an historic camera collection.  As well as hosting a programme of regularly changing contemporary photography and art exhibitions Dimbola is also home to a permanent display on the history of the Isle of Wight Festival.

Light lunch offers at Sam’s Piano Bar, Freshwater Bay.

Walk part of Tennyson Trail, a 15-mile walk from Carisbrooke Castle to The Needles, http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/dbimgs/10.Tennyson%20Trail.pdf

Overnight stay and evening meal in Ventnor, provided by Visit Isle of Wight.

Day 2

Explore the Victorian culture around St Lawrence, Ventnor and Bonchurch – a small village to the east of Ventnor.

Algernon Charles Swinburne grew up at Bonchurch, and said in a letter that he had climbed Culver Cliff at 17.[1] He is buried at Bonchurch Church.  Charles Dickens rented a house for the summer of 1845 at what is now the Winterbourne Country House in Bonchurch. He adored the views from St Boniface Downs, northwest of Bonchurch itself. It is believed that one of his most famous novels, ‘David Copperfield’, was written during his stay on the Island.

Visit Osborne, East Cowes.

The Beloved’ (1898) a painting of Christ by William Holman Hunt is on public display at Osborne House, East Cowes.  After seeing his work, Queen Victoria commissioned the painting for the Royal Collection.  Using vivid colours, Hunt depicts Christ staring skyward holding a scroll.  Inscribed on the frame is a biblical text:  “Lo, I come, in the volume of the Book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will O God.”.

Lunch at the Terrace Restaurant, Osborne.

Depart Isle of Wight.

Please include www.visitisleofwight.co.uk in your factbox

For further information, please contact:  Sue Emmerson, Visit Isle of Wight Press Officer, Tel: 07766 705672      E-mail: sue@visitwight.co.uk

Image:    Julia Margaret Cameron, © Julia Margaret Cameron Trust

Editor’s Notes to Julia Margaret Cameron links with the Island

West Wight

Dimbola Lodge, Freshwater Bay, http://www.dimbola.co.uk/

The Tennyson Trail, a 15-mile walk from Carisbrooke Castle to The Needles,

http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/dbimgs/10.Tennyson%20Trail.pdf

George Frederick Watts had a home on the Island, just outside Freshwater where he lived and worked for a number of years with his pupil the Pre-Raphaelite painter, Val Princep, whose family Watts had been close friends with in London.  There is a stained glass window in St Mary’s Church, Freshwater, depicting Sir Galahad based on a painting by Watts of his then wife, the actress Ellen Terry.

Farringford, home of Alfred Lord Tennyson http://farringford.co.uk/    (The house is private but there are 10 self-catering properties in the grounds and a licensed café in the grounds.   http://farringford.co.uk/tennyson)

South Wight

Explore the Victorian culture around St Lawrence, Ventnor and Bonchurch – a small village to the east of Ventnor.

Algernon Charles Swinburne grew up at Bonchurch, and said in a letter that he had climbed Culver Cliff at 17.[1] He is buried at Bonchurch Church.

Charles Dickens rented a house for the summer of 1845 at what is now the Winterbourne Country House in Bonchurch. He adored the views from St Boniface Downs, northwest of Bonchurch itself. It is believed that one of his most famous novels, ‘David Copperfield’, was written during his stay on the Island.

Central Wight

The stained glass windows at St Olave’s Church, Gatcombe, near Newport, are the work of William Morris and his Pre-Raphaelite Group dating from 1865 and 1866.

North Wight

The Beloved’ (1898) a painting of Christ by William Holman Hunt is on public display at Osborne House, East Cowes.  After seeing his work, Queen Victoria commissioned the painting for the Royal Collection.  Using vivid colours, Hunt depicts Christ staring skyward holding a scroll.  Inscribed on the frame is a biblical text:  “Lo, I come, in the volume of the Book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will O God.”.

East Wight

Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll, Queen Victoria’s daughter and a talented artist was a student of Richard Burchett, a British artist and educator on the fringes of the Pre-Raphaelite movement.   His View across Sandown Bay, Isle of Wight (1855) at the Victoria & Albert Museum is seen by modern historians as his best work.      Another Pre-Raphaelite artist, John Brett (1831-1902) also visited the Island where he painted landscapes.

Information on Dimbola Museum and Galleries

The former home of the pioneering Victorian photographer Julia Margaret Cameron now houses the largest public collection in the UK of Cameron’s photographs and an historic camera collection.  As well as hosting a programme of regularly changing contemporary photography and art exhibitions Dimbola is also home to a permanent display on the history of the Isle of Wight Festival.

For further information, please contact the Exhibitions & Collections Coordinator Dr Rachel Flynn on: 01983 756 814 / rachel.flynn@dimbola.co.uk / www.dimbola.co.uk

Galleries, Museum and Tearooms Open Tuesday to Sunday and Bank Holidays 10am-4pm, October to March, and 7 Days a week from 10am-5pm, April to September.

Adults £5; Concessions (Seniors, Students) £4.50; Families (2 Adults, 2 Children) £12; Under 18s £2; Under 5s Free; Art Fund, Friends of the JMCT, Museums Association Free.

EVEN MORE ACTS JOIN OUR SUMMER OF LOVE – BESTIVAL 2015

WILEY / SKEPTA / RONI SIZE REPRAZENT (LIVE) / DRENGE / JAGUAR SKILLS / DJ YODA PRESENTS: BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS / KITTY, DAISY & LEWIS / GABRIELLE APLIN / DUB PISTOLS / DINOSAUR PILE-UP / DODGY / KERO KERO BONITO / LLOYD YATES / SEAFRET / XOCKHA / YRSLF 

Plus To Me, To You Behaviour From The Legendary: CHUCKLE BROTHERS 

www.Bestival.net / Facebook /  Twitter / Instagram / Tumblr

#Bestival15 / #SummerofLove

With over 25 stages, revolutionary soundsystems, zombie love-ins, psychedelic woodland adventures, 24-hour free haircuts, and a host of dazzling new attractions, Bestival’s Summer of Love is already looking pretty damn fit. But as ever, we want to get everyone we love involved, including this rather sultry bunch of musical marvels that will have you rockin’ Robin Hill all weekend long this September 10-13.

Love commando Rob da Bank says: “I’m well excited with this new batch of acts we’re announcing tonight. With so many identikit festivals about with similar acts and bills I’m proud that 12 years on we don’t go with the flow. If the indie amazingness of Drenge isn’t your bag then grimy faceslaps from Skepta and Wiley might be, and if you’re insane and don’t like the legendary junglist brilliance of Roni Size and his live Reprazent show then perhaps, just perhaps, you’ll be singing ‘to me, to you, to me, to you’ whilst dancing in a pair of ill-fitting tropical shorts to the Chuckle Brothers. No matter what, there’s plenty more fish in the sea to come, as our Summer of Love really starts to heat up. See you down the front.

Bringing on the love with big fat beats, we’ll have main stage appearances from grime pioneer Wiley, who completely smashed it as our secret guest in 2012, plus the unstoppable skank machine, Dub Pistols.

Dub Pistols legend Barry Ashworth commented: “The Highlight of the year for us will always be playing Bestival, this year we are back on the main stage, it doesn’t get bigger than that, and if that’s not enough you can always catch me spinning tracks and drinking in the Sunday Best Cardboard Record Shop! There’s only one Bestival!

Not quite true, Barry, there are two Bestivals, but we know what you mean! Big love to all our Canadian brethren! More Isle of Wight-based Bestival main stage action will come from cool chanteuse Gabrielle Aplin, sing-along faves Dodgy, and the Isle of Wight’s own Xockha and Yrslf.

Old blue, Bestival’s beloved Big Top will be playing host to some mighty sounds this summer, too, including the much requested return of Joseph Junior Adenuga AKA Skepta and an absolute must-see live set from drum n bass hero Roni Size & Reprazent. We’ll also have recently expanded noiseniks Drenge, our favourite scratch master DJ Yoda Presents: Breakfast of Champions, with his brand new hip-hop band busting up the Big Top live, and then the man himself will be taking on Bollywood for a typically special DJ set, and we’ll have one of the coolest bands ever to grace a festival, Sunday Best favourites, the utterly incomparable Kitty Daisy & Lewis.

Commenting on their latest Bestival appearance, Kitty Daisy & Lewis uttered as one: “We’re so excited to be coming to Bestival again this year, we always have a great time. Sunday Best know how to throw a festival!

The Big Top will also welcome a high-voltage rock assault from Dinosaur Pile-Up, plus sets from Kero Kero Bonito, Lloyd Yates, Seafret and – we’re not sure it’s possible to express quite how excited we are about this – The Chuckle Brothers!Yes, it’ll be history in the making with be-mulleted slapstick to me, to you. CAN. NOT. WAIT.

As if all that wasn’t enough to get you all giddy with joy, he was one of the smash hits acts that started our summer in finest style at Common People, so we’re extremely pleased that turntable ninja, Jaguar Skills, will be joining us to destroy the dancefloor at The Port.

Digital Love: www.Bestival.net / Facebook /  Twitter / Instagram /  Tumblr

#Bestival15 / #SummerofLove

BESTIVAL TICKET LINKS & INFORMATION: 

www.ticketline.co.uk/bestival-tickets / 0844 888 4410

Adult Ticket £195.00

Student Ticket £185.00

Teen (13-17) Ticket £130.00

Child (12 & under) Ticket Free (BUT you MUST obtain a ticket)

Campervan Ticket £92.50

Adult Wild Copse Ticket £325.00

Teen Wild Copse Ticket £165.00

Caravan £105.00 Car Park £15.00

All Tickets: – will incur a booking fee. – incur a £1 donation to the Isle Of Wight Youth Trust*.

There are no Day Tickets.

Lucky Cat Hospitality Packages are also available.

THE WEEKLY PAYMENT PLAN 

We’re pleased to say that we are offering a 10-week payment plan that allows you to buy an adult ticket for an initial deposit of £25 (plus booking fees) followed by a payment of just over £19 per week over the next 19 weeks.

Only available online via: www.ticketline.co.uk/bestival-tickets

Once you have signed up to the payment plan, Ticketline will automatically debit your card on a weekly basis. They only accept Visa (credit or debit) or Mastercard for the payment plan.

NB: Booking fees will be charged with your initial transaction.

THE ISLE OF WIGHT YOUTH TRUST CHARITY DONATION 

*This year we are adding on a £1 charity donation onto all Bestival tickets. The money raised will go directly to the Isle Of Wight Youth Trust (Reg Charity no. 1087163) to help fund their fantastic work offering counselling and support to young people aged 25 and under on the Isle of Wight. The Bestival Foundation is also a proud supporter of the Youth Trust.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON BESTIVAL PLEASE CONTACT 

GET INVOLVED – 020 7604 2944: 

NATIONAL PRESS

CHLOE MUNTS – chloe@getinvolvedltd.com

REGIONAL PRESS & BROADCAST

AIDAN BYRNE – aidan@getinvolvedltd.com

ONLINE & STUDENT:

STEVIE GEDGE stevie@getinvolvedltd.com

The Festival of Flower Fireworks

A celebrating of one of the most stunning plants to be grown in the sub-tropical undercliff of Ventnor Botanic Garden will begin this weekend. Part of the 2015 Garden Isle celebrations focuses on the Botanic garden’s amazing Echium plants. With their huge flower spikes growing over 3m tall. The Garden’s Mediterranean walk contains hundreds of plants, each with a flower spike containing thousands of flowers with every shade of colour from sapphire blue to dusky pink. The result is a stunning floral explosion likened to a natural firework display that all botanic fanatics visiting the Island will simply adore.

Echiums have been grown at Ventnor Botanic Garden for over 30 years, with plants originally imported from the Canary Island of La Palma. Here the plants grow to gigantic sizes in the wild, especially in the dry mountainous upper reaches of the Island, enjoying the warm climate arid terrain. At Ventnor, the original Echium plants have self seeded in the sheltered sub-tropical micro-climate giving rise to a large collection hybridised plants that flower from the end of May to late June.

Chris Kidd, Curator at Ventnor Botanic garden said, “Our display of Echiums in our Mediterranean Garden is simply stunning. Visitors are unlikely to see anything quite like it anywhere else in the UK. We don’t practice traditional formal gardening methods here at VBG, choosing to let Mother Nature take charge and create the plant communities that thrive together in our sheltered warm climate.We call it the Ventnor Method and it puts the garden at the leading edge of modern botanical science. The Echiums choose where they want to grow, we just let them get on with it and see what happens each year. The results speak for themselves and visitors usually clamour to take seeds and plants home with them at the end of their visit to try and grow them elsewhere in the UK, often with great success as they aren’t that difficult to propagate. Give them a well drained sunny spot in the garden and they pretty much look after themselves. It’s in their second year of growth that the fireworks really do begin, with a stunning flower display in early summer.”

The Echium displays are exploding into the spotlight from Whitsun onwards, with the Garden open 7 days a week from 10am for visitors to enjoy the magic of these flower fireworks. Please send your echium pictures to the gardens Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ventnorbotanicCIC

Website www.botanic.co.uk

-ENDS-

For images and all other press enquiries, please contact Lisa Wallis via marketing@botanic.co.uk or call 01983 858041

More about Ventnor Botanic Garden

Ventnor Botanic Garden lies in the remarkable microclimate at the heart of the famous ‘Undercliff.’ This unique garden is protected from the cold northerly winds by chalk downs. Indeed, it holds the warmth from its southerly aspect so well that, combined with the moderating influence of the sea, frost is rarely known.

With an average rainfall of 28 inches its climate is more akin to the Mediterranean. This enables a wide variety of plants considered too tender for much of mainland Britain to be grown outdoors unprotected from the elements.

http://www.botanic.co.uk

 

 

 

 

TRIPADVISOR TRAVELLERS VOTE FOR ISLE OF WIGHT

More than three hundred Isle of Wight tourism businesses, including attractions, accommodation providers, restaurants, pubs and cafes are celebrating after being awarded a 2015 Certificate of Excellence by TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site.

This number includes 31 Island businesses who have received ‘Hall of Fame’ recognition, a highly-coveted award which was created to honour those businesses that have earned a Certificate of Excellence for five consecutive years.

Now in its fifth year, the Certificate of Excellence award celebrates excellence in hospitality and is given only to establishments that consistently achieve outstanding traveller reviews on TripAdvisor. Winners of the award are located all over the world and represent the upper echelon of businesses listed on the website, with only the top 10 percent receiving the prestigious award.

The Certificate of Excellence award is given to outstanding hospitality businesses that have received praise and recognition in reviews by TripAdvisor travellers. Winners of the award range from one-room bed & breakfasts to 6000-room hotels, from bakeries to Michelin star restaurants and hidden attractions to world-renowned parks and museums.

Isle of Wight winners include, the IW Steam Railway, the Model Village in Godshill, Goodleaf Tree Climbing, Nettlecombe Farm Holidays, The Rowborough Hotel, The Cliff Hall Hotel,  Appuldurcombe Gardens Holiday Park, Blackgang Chine and Robin Hill Adventure Park & Gardens.

Winners can showcase their success a number of ways, including displaying the Certificate of Excellence they receive in the coming weeks, uploading the award to their own website, through social media as well as notifying past guests and customers of their win, thereby encouraging repeat visits.

Penny Dyer, Director, Model Village Godshill, said: “We are thrilled to be rated worthy of a Certificate of Excellence again this year.   We really value TripAdvisor feedback as an independent measure of what our customers think.   The whole team here is passionate about the Model Village and to receive this recognition is like a virtual pat on the back.”

Liz Morris, of Nettlecombe Farm, said: “Winning the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence is a real source of pride for the entire team at Nettlecombe Farm and we’d like to thank all of our past guests who took the time to complete a review on TripAdvisor. There is no greater seal of approval than being recognized by one’s customers. With the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence based on customer reviews, the accolade is a remarkable vote of confidence to our business and our continued commitment to excellence.”

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “This is a tremendous result for Isle of Wight destination businesses which are investing time and effort in developing their tourism business, listening to their visitors and using customer feedback to constantly improve their tourism offering.”

ENDS

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

Notes to editors

  1. List of award-winners attached. Sheet one shows all IW winners, sheet two shows Hall of Fame winners only (businesses that have won five years in a row).
  2. Photograph attached “Guests enjoying the unique farm feeding tour at Nettlecombe Farm”. TripAdvisor is the world’s largest travel site, enabling travellers to plan and book the perfect trip. TripAdvisor offers trusted advice from travellers and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features with seamless links to booking tools that check hundreds of websites to find great hotel prices. http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/PressCenter-c4-Fact_Sheet.htmlThe Certificate of Excellence program does not replace the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice® Awards, but is an extension of TripAdvisor’s recognition of highly rated businesses, as reviewed by travellers on the world’s largest travel site.Visit Isle of Wight
  3. Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org
  4. For more information and materials on the Certificate of Excellence program, as well as other resources to help businesses engage with travellers, please visit the TripAdvisor Management Centre at http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk
  5. To qualify for the Certificate of Excellence, businesses must maintain an overall rating of four or higher, out of a possible five, as reviewed by travellers on TripAdvisor. Additional criteria include the volume of reviews received within the last 12 months.

 

ALAN TITCHMARSH TO BECOME A PATRON OF “WIGHT IN BLOOM”

Celebrity gardener and TV presenter, Alan Titchmarsh MBE, VMH (Victoria Medal of Honour RHS) has been revealed as Patron of “Wight in Bloom”, an annual horticultural competition which is open to all Island residents, with the aim to make the Island a brighter, greener place to live and visit.

Sponsored by Visit Isle of Wight (VIOW) – who have taken over management of the competition alongside Peggy Jarman – and Red Funnel Ferries, Wight in Bloom 2015 is being developed as a curtain-raiser to VIOW’s Garden Isle campaign, which will coincide with Visit England’s Year of the Garden 2106.

Photocall

What:               A “floating” garden cocktail party, provided by Ventnor Botanic Gardens, will take place on board Red Funnel’s Red Eagle car ferry to launch Wight in Bloom 2015.

In attendance:David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, who will announce plans for Wight in Bloom 2015, Jonathan Green, Marketing & Communications Director, Red Funnel Ferries, Peggy Jarman, organiser Wight in Bloom, Mike Fitt OBE, Wight in Bloom Campaign Advisor, along with past winners of the Wight in Bloom competition.

Peggy Jarman who has been running Wight in Bloom for many years is retiring and will be made Honorary President.

(In addition, Simon Goodenough, AHRHS (Associate of Honour awarded by the RHS) has agreed to become a Special Advisor of Wight in Bloom).

Where:            On board the Red Eagle car ferry.

When   :           Tuesday, 26th May

Time:               From 6pm – meet Sue Emmerson, Visit Isle of Wight, in the Red Funnel ticket office, Trinity Road, East Cowes. Closest postcode PO32 6RA.

6.30pm –`car ferry departs East Cowes with invited guests

7pm – photocall on board ferry.

8pm – ferry arrives back at East Cowes

Please e-mail michelle@visitwight if you would like to attend this event.

Root out the gardening gloves, go potty with those plants and get growing for the return of Wight in Bloom in 2015.

Residents, schools, businesses, community groups, towns and villages on the Island are invited to don their gardening gloves and take part in Wight in Bloom.

The annual competition is open to all Island residents and organisations to show the rest of the Island what they’ve been doing to brighten up their garden and improve the local environment.

To be in with a chance of winning, keen gardeners can choose to enter one of 8 main categories:

1          Best Small Front Garden

2          Best Large Front Garden

3          Best Public House

4          Best Accommodation Garden

5          Best Senior Citizen Complex/Nursing Home/Care Home

6          Best Young People Initiative

7          Best Community Floral Project

8          Best Tourist Attraction Garden

The 2015 event is organised and sponsored by Visit Isle of Wight and Red Funnel Ferries who are adding their support and financial backing to the event to help create a vibrant and welcoming environment for visitors.

The organisers hope that the appointment of popular celebrity gardener Alan Titchmarsh as Patron of Wight in Bloom will emphasise the Island’s green credentials and help inspire Islanders to get involved in Wight in Bloom this year.

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “We’re honoured that Alan has agreed to be our Patron of Wight in Bloom and now plan a major push to encourage more tourism businesses and retailers on the Island to show a bit of flower power this summer.

“The success of the Wight in Bloom is testament to all the hard work and dedication by the organiser, Peggy Jarman, who over the years has worked with Island communities, businesses and local individuals to help create colourful displays at entrances to villages, around bus shelters, in pub gardens and in residents’ own front gardens.”

Peggy Jarman said:  “I am thrilled and delighted that Visit Isle of Wight and Red Funnel have stepped in to support the competition.

“Whether you are a novice gardener or an expert, everyone is very welcome to enter and make our Island a greener and more colourful place”.

Judging will take place in July and entry is free.  An awards ceremony will be held in August, where prizes for the lucky winners – one for each of the 8 categories and an overall winner – will hopefully be presented by Alan Titchmarsh.

Alan Titchmarsh said: “The Island is bursting with natural beauty from its wildflower cliff walks, bluebell woods and orchid-rich fields, to its cottage gardens, horticultural shows and wide variety of public and private gardens.

“I’m therefore honoured to be Patron of Wight in Bloom and look forward to seeing who it discovers next.”

Green-fingered Islanders can join in the floral fun by completing the entry form which will be available in the 22nd May edition of the Isle of Wight County Press.

ENDS

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

 

LOCAL SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT PROJECT FUNDS NEW VISITOR PROJECT MANAGER AT VISIT ISLE OF WIGHT

A new Visitor Project Manager who is being 100% funded by the Local Sustainable Transport (LSTF) project has been appointed by Visit Isle of Wight (VIOW) to undertake the next stage of the Government-funded campaign, designed to encourage travel behavioural change.

 

Zoe Stroud, ‎who previously worked for the IW Chamber of Commerce as their Group Marketing Manager, has joined the DMO (Destination Marketing Organisation) on a one-year contract to ensure co-ordination across the Visitor LSTF projects.

 

Specifically in relation to the “Drive Less See More” campaign, Zoe is developing a team of eco savvy travel ambassadors, who will be helping holiday-makers to enjoy the Island without the need to use their cars.

 

The ambassadors will visit key tourist sites and will provide free information and special offers on some of the Island’s great car-free experiences, from riding an open-top “breezer” bus to hiring bicycles, or taking great countryside walks.

 

Working alongside Tom Ransom, VIOW’S “Bicycle Island” champion, Zoe’s other duties will include growing the walking and cycling festival economy and managing the other elements of Access to Visitor experiences.

 

Zoe said: “I am delighted to join Visit Isle of Wight in this new exciting role. I look forward to continuing working with businesses across the island and developing new partnerships.”

 

VIOW has worked with the Isle of Wight Council to successfully secure £230,000, a third year of LSTF funding – part of which was used to bring the Pearl Izumi event to the Isle of Wight earlier this month.

 

Some of this funding is also being used to employ Zoe who with her previous experience in the UK’s tourism industry, will bring much to the benefit of the scheme and the Island.

 

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight said: “Zoe has shown great strengths in her different roles and is ready to apply her great enthusiasm and passion for the Island in her new role.

 

“The success of last Thursday’s (14th May) Pearl Izumi Tour Series cycle race in Ryde further reinforces the roll-out of Bicycle Island and we welcome her support in building on existing sustainable travel projects as well as supporting new initiatives”.

 

ENDS

 

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

 

Notes to Editors

 

•             The attached image was taken at the Pearl Izumi Tour Series cycle race on Thursday, 14th May and shows (left to right) Zoe Stroud, Visitor Project Manager, David Thornton, CEO and Tom Ransom, Sustainable Transport Marketing Executive – Visit Isle of Wight Ltd.

 

Drive Less See More (DLSM) is the primary public facing brand developed by Visit Isle of Wight for the Isle of Wight Council (IWC) “Sustainable Transport Access to Tourism” project.

 

This project has been funded by IWC after securing £3.95 Million from the government’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF). The project started on the 12 November 2012 and runs until October 2015.

 

VIOW has been engaged to deliver the “hearts and minds” marketing/promotion element of the overall bid. This strands primary brand is Drive Less See More. A secondary brand/work stream also carried out under the LSTF funding is Bicycle Island. This is a dedicated campaign to promote and develop the islands Cycle Tourism industry and increase the numbers of visitors on bikes.

 

What’s been happening so far?

 

In 2013/14 a number of marketing campaigns were developed by VIOW to support the LSTF bid targets. These included:

 

Branding and marketing for the LSTF funded coaster Dinosaur bus and promotional materials off island- Meridian TV adverts, leaflets and posters on SW Trains network-+£120K

Spring poster and landmark billboard “your next stop “campaign featuring how close the Island is from London on the train -£39K

Adverts in national magazines such as radio Times, Metro, Times Magazine, BBC Countryfile etc. +£100K

Development of Bicycle Island brand for Cycle Tourism including adverts and promotions EG 6 page feature in the Guardians “Cycling Breaks” magazine supplement-£10K and London tube coving adverts-£26K.  http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/bicycle-island

 

The next major element of the Visitor LSTF project will be the opening of a travel ambassador centre at a high-profile location on the Isle of Wight – to be announced shortly.

 

Free Event – Go Wild on the Duver – Isle of Wight BIOBLITZ 2015

10am – 4pm, Thursday 28th May, St Helen’s Duver, St Helens

Do you care about wildlife and nature? If so, there will be a perfect opportunity this half term for nature lovers of all ages to turn wildlife detective. Come and help experts from the Isle of Wight Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership and the National Trust track down and record wildlife around the woods, beaches and shoreline of St Helen’s Duver.

Go Wild on the Duver is a free family event looking at the Island’s wildlife both during the day and at night. The Isle of Wight Bioblitz is organised by the Isle of Wight Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership in co-operation with the Biodiversity Action Plan Partnership (BAP) and the National Trust.

The aim of the Go wild on the Duver Bioblitz is to record as many species as possible on St Helen’s Duver. This year there will be the chance to search sandy beaches, rock pools, sand dunes, and coastal woods for birds, plants and insects like little egrets, thrift, mining bees, sea anemones, shrimps and blennies.

St Helen’s Duver will be buzzing with great wildlife activities taking place throughout the day including: art activities, wildflower and wildlife walks, bug hunts, moth trapping, bird ringing as well as numerous other activities for the public between 10am and 4pm. There will even be on expert led bat spotting expedition during the evening.

No experience is needed and people of all ages are welcome to come along and help the experts look for the plants and animals that make this area so special.

Children will also have the change to tick off some activities in the National Trust’s ‘50 Things to do before you’re 11 ¾ Challenge’, such as finding crazy creatures in a rock pool and catching a crab.

The National Trust’s Head Ranger Robin Lang, says: “We know that people care passionately about nature and wildlife – TV programmes like Countryfile, Spring and Autumn Watch are proof that more people than ever before are interested in the natural environment. In order to protect the precious coastal wildlife that we have on the Island, we need to update our records on every different species, and we’d love as many people as possible to help us. Nature and wildlife lovers of all ages are welcome.”

2015 is a special year for the National Trust on the Island. It is 50 years since the Trust launched Neptune, a national campaign to save some of the country’s most beautiful stretches of coastline. As a result the campaign saved 775 miles of coastline which will now be protected forever, including 17 miles of the finest coastline on the Island including the Tennyson Down, Compton and Brook Bay. This year, the Trust on the Island is holding a wide programme of event and activities to celebrate the Coast

For the latest event updates and activities timetable visit: http://wightaonb.org.uk/events/go-wild-on-the-duver-a-free-family-day-wildlife-event/

Or watch our short teaser video about this year’s Bioblitz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUXLuT27MVw

ENDS

Notes for editors

For further information, photos or logos please contact Joel Bateman (AONB Communication and Project Officer) 01983 823855 (joel.bateman@iow.gov.uk).

The Isle of Wight Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is one of the finest landscapes in the country.  It was designated in 1963 and covers approximately half of the Island (191 km2).  The Isle of Wight AONB incorporates a rich variety of distinctive landscapes and is often likened to lowland England in miniature. The purpose of designation is the conservation and enhancement of natural beauty. More information – call 01983 823855 or visit www.wightaonb.org.uk

The Isle of Wight AONB Partnership oversees the management of the AONB.  It is an independent organisation made up of key stakeholders with a direct management role or interest in the AONB.  This is jointly funded by DEFRA and the Isle of Wight Council.

 

YouTube artists confirmed to perform at Isle of Wight Festival 2015

YouTube artists confirmed to perform at Isle of Wight Festival 2015

 

DanielJ / Alice Olivia / Myth City / Only1Noah / 

Toby Randall  / Hannah Trigwell

www.isleofwightfestival.com

Thursday 21st May 2015: In what is a ‘first’ for the first major festival of the summer, The Isle of Wight Festival today announces details of six incredible YouTube artists who will perform exclusive live sets over the weekend of 11-14 June.

DanielJ, Alice Olivia, Myth City, Only1Noah, Toby Randall and Hannah Trigwell are an exciting addition to this year’s line up, joining the likes of Fleetwood Mac, Blur, The Prodigy, The Black Keys, Paolo Nutini, Pharrell Williams, James Bay, The Charlatans and Jessie Ware.

The introduction of YouTube artists to The Isle of Wight Festival 2015 marks a first for both the festival and the video-sharing platform, and the first time YouTube artists have done festival performances in this manner. These performances will take place on the Platform One stage, which gives a platform for young unsigned talent at The Isle of Wight Festival each year. Platform One is a not for profit, independent music college based on the island.

Isle of Wight Festival organiser John Giddings: “I’m really pleased to be welcoming YouTube artists to this year’s Isle of Wight Festival! We are committed to putting on new and emerging artists each year, and with so much amazing talent on YouTube it made total sense to book some of the best acts that you can currently discover on the site.”

Candice Morrissey, Head of YouTube Music Partnerships EMEA:

“It’s amazing to see these brilliant homegrown YouTube artists join The Isle of Wight Festival line-up this year, and testament to their popularity and talent. We’ve no doubt they will bring a different dimension to the festival through their unique sounds and styles – and rock out with the best of the performers!”

Meet the Isle of Wight Festival YouTube Artists…

DanielJ / https://www.youtube.com/user/DanielJOFFICIAL

The 17-year-old singer from North London has over 460k YouTube subscribers and 30 million views. Under the YouTube artist development label PopShack, he has written with 5 Seconds Of Summer writer/producer Josh Wilkinson on single ‘I Won’t Let You Down’, and released a phone app called Alien Meerkats in order to update his fans on his latest music and news. He has covered music acts including Bruno Mars, Kanye West and Justin Timberlake.

Alice Olivia / https://www.youtube.com/user/AliceOliviaMusic

A 22-year-old singer from Cambridge with over 3.5 million views. Signed with London-based Soko Records, she has covered acts including Rihanna, Adele and Ellie Goulding.

Myth City / https://www.youtube.com/user/MythCityMusic

A four piece rock band from the Midlands fronted by YouTube star Mazzi Maz, who has 725k subscribers and recently hosted the AAA backstage programming for MTV Brand New 2015. Their brand new single ‘Vendetta’ taken from their debut EP is out now.

Only1Noah / https://www.youtube.com/user/only1noah

US-based Noah first went viral in 2012 with his bluesy cover of LMFAO’s ‘Sexy and I Know It’, which earned him more than 8 million views in less than a week. Noah, who has 435K YouTube subscribers and over 62M views, has appeared on several high profile TV shows including NBC’s Today Show, Jay Leno’s Tonight Show, Dancing With The Stars, and many other US and European radio stations.

He has opened for Ed Sheeran, Cobra Starship, Matt Nathanson and Selena Gomez, and released his debut album ‘Among the Wildest Things’ last year.  Noah also played McKinley High student Roderick in the final season of Glee. His influences include U2, T-Bone Burnett, Marcus Mumford and John Legend.

Toby Randall / https://www.youtube.com/user/tobyrandall1

At aged only 13, Toby found fame on Vine with his six second long music covers, and has garnered over a million followers in just under a year. He has more than 330K subscribers and nearly 10M views on his YouTube channel. He captured the attention of Nicki Minaj, who shared his cover of her song ‘Pills N Potion’ to her social following of over 30 million, and Paramore’s Hayley Williams, who reached out to him after seeing his videos.

He has attended YouTube conventions DigiFest UK in London alongside the likes of Zoella, PointlessBlog and Elyar Fox and Social Con Chicago with Jerrome Jarr, Cameron Dallas and Nash Grier. His musical influences include:  Sia, Rihanna, Beyonce, and his first Vine cover was Taylor Swift.

Hannah Trigwell / https://www.youtube.com/user/hannahtrigwell

Hannah began her music career busking on the streets of Leeds, and now has over 35 million views and more than 300k subscribers on YouTube.

She toured the UK several times and released two EP’s in her final year of university whilst studying Biology, and her single ‘Headrush’ reached number 1 in Vietnam. In March (2015) she completed her seventh UK tour and is currently writing for her next EP.  Hannah has played on several sold-out UK tours, supporting the likes of Josh Kumra, Boyce Avenue, Jake Bugg, Alex Goot, Wretch 32 and Lawson.

The Isle of Wight Festival, now in its 14th year, is one of the crown jewels of the British summer calendar, with a unique festival experience for music fans of all ages to enjoy. The festival offers 12 stages of live music over the weekend – including Main Stage headliners, acoustic sets, DJ performances and up-and-coming talent – alongside a huge variety of additional entertainment and activities such as the Bohemian Woods, Intoxicated Tea Rooms and Hipshaker, to escape from everyday life for that one weekend in June. Summer starts at the legendary Isle of Wight Festival, all the biggest names in music, one unmissable weekend: Be There.

A full range of ticket, travel and camping / accommodation options are available from www.isleofwightfestival.com.

Tickets:

  • Weekend with Camping – £195
  • Weekend Non-Camping – £185
  • Student – £180
  • Teen – £145
  • Children under 12 – free
  • Disabled Access – Must be purchased via the Ticketmaster Special Access number 0800 988 4440

Boutique Camping:

  • All Events VIP provide Luxury Glamping with backstage access, room service and VIP transport
  • Tangerine Fields –Turn up and find your tent already pitched plus Tangerine Bar and Cafe and grooming facilities
  • Eve’s Tipis – Try something different and stay in a tipi, plus enjoy cocktails or champagne from the bar or some hot breakfast options to start your day right
  • Podpads – Bunk down in the colourful Podpads with solid wood or canvas options
  • Love Your Tent – enjoy an ethical camping experience plus hot showers and a Poodle Parlour!

Travel:

A variety of travel options including ferry, speed boats, river crossing, Big Green Coach Company and National Rail can be viewed on the festival’s website.

The Isle of Wight Festival 2015 Line Up To Date

Blur- Fleetwood Mac – The Black Keys  – The Prodigy  – Paolo Nutini – Pharrell Williams – Billy Idol – Counting Crows – You Me at Six – 

Groove Armada (DJ SET) –Jessie Ware  – Paul Oakenfold  – James –

Kool & The Gang – Courteeners –

Imelda May – Jess Glynne  – Lightning Seeds – Chicks on Speed – Kodaline  – Suzanne Vega – The Struts – Foxes – Coasts – Ash  –

Sheppard – The View – Ruen Brothers – 

Geno Washington  & The Ram Jam Band –

James Bay- First Aid Kit – Visconti & Woodmansey – Pretty Vicious –

UB40’s Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue – La Femme – Sharon Corr –

Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson – Noasis – The Rainband

 

The Hard Rock Stage:

Ben Montague – Bethia Beadman – Claydon Connor – The Carnabys –

Germein Sisters – Little Eye – Honey Ryder – The High Kings – King Eider –

Pronghorn  – Tim Arnold

Lisa Birch, PR Manager, First Floor, 1-11 Carteret Street, London, SW1H 9DJ

Tel | 0203 327 7165, Mob | 07415863761, Email | lisa.birch@dawbell.com

www.dawbell.com

 

 

The 2015 Pearl Izumi Tour Series Rides into Ryde

Thousands of people turned out for one of the Island’s most memorable ever sporting occasions as Ryde town centre was transformed into an incredible 1.3km cycling circuit for the day (14 May 2015).

Community races involving amateur racers and professional team time trials took place throughout the afternoon before the spectacular, main event – The Pearl Izumi Tour Series at 7.30pm.

Paul Herbert, Service Director, Island Roads said: “We are delighted to have played a major role in bringing such a prestigious event to the Island.  As our roads are improved through the highways PFI, it would be nice to think that the Island could host even more top quality cycling events in the future.”

Cllr Ian Ward, Chairman IW Council, said: “I think this is the kind of terrific event that the Isle of Wight needs and we should work together to attract more events of this calibre.”

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “Visit Isle of Wight is extremely proud to bring this event to the Island.   A huge audience of visitors and local residents turned out to give ‘Bicycle Island’ a tremendous start to the season – well done to everyone involved.”

Don’t forget to look out for the TV coverage on ITV4 tomorrow evening (15th May) at 8pm!

ENDS

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org