Diarmuid Gavin Diarmuid Gavin is to be the keynote judge on the Alexander Rose student competition. Celebrity Irish garden designer, Diarmuid Gavin, one of the UK’s leading Designers and a Chelsea Flower Show Gold Medallist is to be the keynote Judge on the Alexander Rose National Student Design competition. Borge Leth, Managing Director of Alexander Rose, has said: ‘We are delighted to welcome Diarmuid as our keynote Judge. His experience and international perspective on garden design will ensure we choose the most appropriate winners of our National Student Design competition.’ Diarmuid came to widespread attention after first appearing on Gardener’s World. Since then he has appeared on Home Front in the Garden, This Morning and Diarmuid’s Big Adventure. He also competed in the 2004 series of Strictly Come Dancing and the 2013 series of Splash with Olympic medalist Tom Daly. Speaking of his career, Diarmuid said: “I always had faith something good would happen, though I never once thought I’d become a TV gardener. That was never on the radar. I feel very proud to be judging the Alexander Rose competition which will provide emerging young designers with a valuable real life design experience, something I wish was available when I was starting out’. Widely regarded as the ‘enfant terrible’ of the garden design world, Diarmuid won an RDS Gold Award in 1991 and 1993, a Bronze medal at the Chelsea Flower Show in 1995, a Silver-Gilt medal in 2004, and a Silver-Gilt medal in 2007. He finally won Gold at Chelsea for “The Irish Sky Garden” in 2011, in partnership with Fáilte Ireland,and the City of Cork. His work has long been recognised for its innovation and his reputation for clashes with the so-called gardening ‘establishment’ is famous; however, arguably his biggest achievement was to popularize gardening through the medium of television, and move it away from the exclusive and stultifying atmosphere of a private club. In 2007, Diarmuid received an Honorary Doctorate from Nottingham Trent University in recognition of his international reputation for contemporary garden design. Diarmuidis also the author of a number of best-selling gardening books including Diarmuid Gavin’s Big Ideas and Outer Spaces and his autobiography ‘How the boy next door turned out’ – an open and honest account of his chaotic and inspired road to success.