We held our first urban furniture and street lighting pop-up exhibition at the Sheffield Botanical Gardens on Wednesday 25th September.
We invited landscape architects and urban planners to join us for a day of educational talks, networking and a guided tour of our world-class product exhibition, exhibited around the Botanical Gardens. Our supplier exhibition introduced each of our brands and included catalogues and models, which gave landscaping professionals the opportunity to browse through our extensive product collection.
A Christie public BBQ lunch
We started the day with lunch prepared on our Christie public barbecues, hiring a chef to freshly prepare food for everyone. Our guests got the unique chance to see the barbecue in action, and noticed how easy and safe it was to use. They were some of the first in the UK to try food cooked on the stylish electric cooktops.
This sophsiticated cooking technology is manufactured in Australia where 40,000 of them are installed across the country. The barbecues have become community anchors in Australia’s public spaces, opening up opportunity for social engagement between different cultures and generations.
Educational & supplier talks
Theme – Ecologically friendly landscape design.
For our first programme of talks we chose ecology as our theme. Architectural practices around the UK are declaring a climate emergency, but how can landscape architects and urban planners change how they work to make radicals changes within their landscape designs? We designed a set of talks which would educate proffesionals with facts and practical tips on how to achieve this, as we want to share knowledge with the industry to improve the quality of the public realm for all.
Some of our world-class suppliers joined us at the event to explain how specifying quality landscaping products can help towards these efforts.
Our special guests Ghesa, kicked the talks off by introducing their epic global fountains and water features. Their Senior Architect and International Consultant, João Branco delivered a talk on how they design and engineer their huge multi-media displays. It was great to see how the fountain displays are developed from drawings into epic-scale water, light and muscial spectacles. His talk will be made available on our Youtube channel soon.
Lauri Latvala from FinBin followed with a talk on how their CitySolar next-generation smart bin worked, which tied in nicely with our theme of sustainability. Using integrated wifi and a solar-powered compressor, the bin monitors fill capacity and helps a clients facilities department manage waste management more efficiently. He explained how manfacturing their litter bins and recycling bins out of galvannealed steel ensures that they are super resistant to outdoor weathering and rust, outperforming the litter bins by decades making them a more sustainable option. Many of their bins also come with various shaped apertures to help with recyling different types of waste.
Some of their bins were installed around the Botanical Gardens: CitySolar SMART bin, Bermuda Triple, Wave 2, Edge 100, Novus 80 2sided, Ellipse 100 , CityPack and the City 100. His presentation will also be available on Youtube soon.
Jeff Sorrill from Green Estates CIC delivered with a fantastic talk on green roofs. The industry knows the positive environmental impacts of them, but do landscape architects and urban designers know how to successfully introduce plants onto buildings? Jeff showcased some inspirational case studies and gave practical tips and considerations to help the industry to specify them with confidence. We will be releasing his talk on Youtube soon.
moveart founder and CEO Norbert presented a talk on explaining how the different types of profiling work when designing a bespoke playsculpture. He explained how the HIP profiling worked and also introduced a new SIP profiling technique which has been designed to incorporate a public spaces landscape into the design of the moveart form. All moveart playsculptures® are manufactured from accoya wood which is 100% sustainable, landscape architects showed great interest in this exceptionally durable material that reduces environmental impact.
We have recently added the moveart family bench into our demo kit, and launched this for the first time at the Botanical Gardens exhibition. Norbert’s talk will alsoe available on Youtube.
Product exhibition tour
Installed around the Sheffield Botanical Gardens.
In the afternoon, we took our guests on a guided tour around the product exhibition which was installed around the Botanical Gardens. Landscape Architects commented on how great and unique opporunity it was to see the products outside and used by the public. Suppliers joined us on the tour, to answer questions regarding the products, and were on hand to explain functionalities of the product.
Children playing on the Ghesa water bench
Landscape Architects and Urban Designers learning about the products.
More educational & supplier talks
Continuing with the theme of ecology, we invited Dr. Ross Cameron, Senior Lecturer Landscape Management, Ecology & Design from the Landscape Architecture Department at the University of Sheffield. He set up a fantastic discussion about what the reality of climate change looks like and gave useful tips like using plants that can withstand hotter temperatures. His talk will be available on Youtube.
Director from Handspring Design Scot Fletcher delivered a presentation on the company’s unique large-scale timber structures. He ran through an impressive collection of projects demonstrating the versatility and broad capability of their structures which are all hand-made using a unqiue timber steam-bending technique. Scot produced a new model of the ‘Birds Nest’ especially for the show, which was exhibited in the brand exhibtion.
Manuel Mestre, International Director of Urbidermis Santa & Cole joined us for the event to introduce the newly launched products that they have added into their urban collection earlier in the year. He went into more detail about the Rai bench, PeriSphere bench, Arne S street light, Tumbler street light and the Slope street light.
We exhibited a number of their world-class products around the exhibition which included, Key Bike Racks, Liviano, Harpo (legs & slats), Rama lighting, Arne lighting, Slope light, Neo Romantico Classico, Neo Romantico Liviano Rai bench
Lighting for life – Brian Healy.
Our last talk was presented by our new Business Development Manager Brian Healy who delivered his ‘Lighting for life’ talk. Brian explained how LED lighting works and how the temperature of lighting affects the eco-system and human health. He gave practical advise and tips on how landscape architects can create ecologically friendly lighting schemes within their landscape plans.
If you are interested in listening to this talk, Brian can visit your practice to deliver his insightful 45 minute presentation. Please register your interest by emailing email@example.com
Image copyright far left: News & Star, The Cumberland News – A stretch of “bat-friendly” street lighting has been switched on in Warwickshire, in what is believed to be a UK first.
Networking and dinner
After some fantastic talks, we cooked dinner for our guests on the Chrisite BBQ again. There was opportunity for landscaping proffesionals to network amongst the industry and meet the suppliers and ask them questions. We recieved some great feedback about the event, with particular comments on the unique opportunity to see the public interacting with the extraordinary benches.
2 week exhibition
We left our products installed around the gardens for 2 weeks to give those who couldn’t make it on the day the opportunity to see the products. The public also had the chance to interact with them….we recieved one lovely email from a family who explained how much they loved the Timberplay snails! Here is some footage of 15 month old Phoenix, who regularly visited the Botanical Gardens through-out the two weeks to play on them.
A great success
The event was a great success and we’d like to thank everyone that joined us, including our suppliers. It was a great opportunity to bring our community together, where many like-minded people shared ideas and inspired each other. Everyone shared the common goal of wanting to design, develop and create better, healthier, sustainable and more socially inclusive public spaces – which is exactly what we’re about!
For more details on any of our products, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org