A CHELSEA gold medal winner and celebrated clematis expert will be helping green-fingered souls to hone their technique when he takes centre stage at a Wirral garden centre this month.

Raymond Evision will be holding court as part of Gordale Garden and Home Centre's annual clematis weekend event, which takes between 11am and 4pm on June 21 and June 22.

The celebrated expert - who has won more than 20 gold medals at the Chelsea Flower Show, eight for exhibits of dematis cultivars - will be appearing at the event on the Sunday and will hold a series of informative talks suitable for all levels of interest.

In 1995, Raymond was awarded RHS Victoria Medal of Honour for outstanding service to horticulture.

This was followed by an OBE in 2000 for services to horticulture and the RHS Cory Memorial Cup in 2005 for far-reaching work in breeding and developing new clematis cultivars.

Having written several books on the subject, his first book - Making the Most of Clematis - is now in its third reprint.

His other books include The Gardener's Guide to Growing Clematis, Clematis for Everyone and Clematis for Small Spaces, which was awarded the Garden Media Guild Reference Book of the Year in 2007.

Raymond's talks will take place at 11.30am and 2.30pm as part of the free annual event at the Burton-based garden centre, which first opened its doors in 1948.

Well-known clematis enthusiast Simon Catterall from Garden Centre Plants will also be attending the event, making an appearance on the Saturday.

He will be on hand to offer help and advice on choosing and growing the versatile plant.