The 'Shirley Temple' of Falmouth Spring Flower Show came face to face with her much younger self at the opening of a nostalgic exhibition in the foyer of the town’s library.

As a young child, Penny Keeping had been chosen to present flowers to the mayor’s wife, Mrs Elkington, at the opening of the 1950 show. An appeal through the pages of The Packet to trace Penny was a success and resulted in Penny, now Penny Gedye and living in Truro, coming forward.

Penny and her husband, Peter, have agreed to attend this year’s Spring Flower Show, to be held at the Princess Pavilion on March 29 and 30, but ahead of that, the couple attended the official opening of the Then and Now exhibition.

The display, put together by Jean Carr, tells the story of the flower show in old newspaper clippings, photographs and other memorabilia. Inside the library there is also a display of gardening books thanks to librarian Jayne Cardew, and flower arrangements by Elizabeth Doidge, the show’s vice-president and current holder of the Challenge Cup for Floral Art.

The Then and Now exhibition will remain on display in the Municipal Buildings on The Moor until March 29.

There is still time to take part in the Falmouth Spring Flower Show as the deadline for entries is this Friday, March 21. There are no entry fees and exhibitors can visit the show free. For non-gardeners there are classes for cacti and succulents, “my favourite houseplant” and photography. Fun classes include a floral arrangement to look like cupcakes.

n The schedule and entry form can be downloaded from Completed forms can be emailed to