Saturday, 26 April 2008


Michael Doherty read his first book on floristry and flower arranging when he was twelve years old. He still treasures the book and it’s influence was the beginning of a long career in the industry. His work has taken him all over the world and he has just started a new job at Writtle College in Chelmsford in the UK as a floristry lecturer. Michael also ran his own freelance floristry company in Inishowen for three years.

A Place Apart, the International Flower Festival has been organised by Michael for the second year and Daniel O’Donnell will be officially opening the event on the 1st of May at 7:30 pm. This is a ticket only event and you can buy these from Loreto house - (074 9362204) get them now though as tickets are limited and they are going fast! The House is open on Friday 2nd of May and admission is only €10…Not to be missed!

What music do you like?
I have a really broad spectrum and it depends what mood I am in. When I am driving, I listen to classical, modern disco, house and liturgical CD’s.

What would you never throw away?
Florists never throw anything away! We will even keep old stalks that are left over from our designs. You never know when they will come in handy.

What books are you reading at the moment?
I am teaching art deco floristry at the moment so I am reading a period flower history book for information. My bedtime read is the Monk who sold his Ferrari by Robin S Sharma. This is a book of oriental wisdom, which advises you to take charge of your life.

Have you been to the cinema recently, what did you see and was it any good?
I went to see 27 Dresses directed by Anne Fletcher. This is a film about a woman who wrestles with the idea of standing by her sister's side as her sibling marries the man she's secretly in love with. It is a real “Chick Flick” and enjoyable.

What section of the newspaper do you turn to first?
The television page! When I am away I like to know what is going on at home, so I will look up the Buncrana notes on the internet.

What is your idea of a good night out?
I can’t really tell you about that! You will have to ask the friends I go out on the town with…

What is your idea of a great meal?
Having it cooked by someone else. Good friends, good food and good drink!

Have you a favourite TV programme?
I am a bit of a TV head. I enjoy Brothers and Sisters and Podge and Rodge…anything tacky really!

How do you relax?
What’s that? With my new job in England and coming home at weekends for the flower festival, I don’t get much chance to relax. I am partial to a bit of reflexology though in the quieter moments.

What job did you want to do when you were a child?
I either wanted to be a chef or a florist. I tried being a chef for a few years as a job but got the calling for floristry.

Where would you like to go for your holidays?
I would like to go to a secluded beach in the sun. It would have a swimming pool, with fresh water, not salty. I would like total isolation with no phone, for at least 5 days. That’s not too much to ask is it?

Your idea of heaven?
Loreto House. It’s magical at any time of the day.

Your idea of hell?
Teaching 16 –17 year olds the art of floristry!

What famous people would you invite around for dinner and why?
Alan Carr the stand up comedian would be my first choice for a fun evening.

Favourite animal?
That would have to be my dog, Willow. He is an adorable six year old whippet.

Biggest fear?
Losing someone very dear.

Biggest thrill?
The day I passed my National Diploma in Floristry.

The world’s most irritating invention?
The plastic bag. They are a hassle and cause loads of environmental problems.

Personal philosophy?
When I die, I don’t want to dwindle away. I want to be sideways in the coffin with a glass of champagne in one hand, strawberries in the other and shouting Whoo Hoo, what a ride!!

What is your idea of a good night in?
Spaghetti bolognaise, rosé wine and a tub of Haagen-Dazs ice cream!

Biggest disappointment?
I think that would be taking so long to achieve what I have; I have gone around the houses a bit! I realise that this is a bonus though.

Which period in history would you most like to have lived through?
The Roman Empire, I like the theatrical feel to it and the style of clothes. They appeared to live a life of pure debauchery. Wine, wine and more wine…..!

World’s most useful invention?
The wheel. The flower festival wouldn’t be happening without it!

Any last words?
Funny you should ask… We need people to take part in the gardening competition at the festival. Anyone interested can ring me at Loreto House.


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