Wednesday, July 17, 2024

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Beautiful Sussex Open Gardens


Throughout Spring and Summer owners of some of Sussex’s most stunning private gardens open them up for the public to visit.  This is often done to raise funds for charity.  One of the best programmes is organised by St Wilfrid’s Hospice.

Various features

The gardens are mostly opened on weekends, although some offer a weekday opening.  The days are extremely well organised and although the facilities offered at each garden differ, most have plenty of car parking, refreshments (including the most fabulous home-baked cakes), book, craft and garden plant stalls.

Stalls to browse

One even has an Artist’s Studio.  Although the houses are not opened up, many of them are beautiful, historic buildings set in these wonderful grounds.  You could enjoy a full day at some as there can be a BBQ provided (with vegetarian options).

Delicious home-baked cakes

Many (not all) are wheelchair accessible and some allow dogs, but do check on the website.

There’s always plenty of seating to enjoy your cuppa and cake and, often, listen to live music.  The music has been as diverse as Stardust Music Duo playing songs from various decades, a harpist, flautist of a ukulele group.

You’ll find plenty of volunteers to guide you, from the car parking through to enjoying the grounds.  They’re easily recognised in their St. Wilfrid’s Hospice t-shirts.  They’ve all given their time freely, as have the stallholders and musicians, to raise funds for the hospices.

Wildlife Pond

Your entire visit can be free but there’s plenty of opportunities to donate, from a bucket on entry for the car park to lottery ticket stalls on the grounds.  It’s a worthwhile, relaxing and rejuvenating day out.

And the gardens are simply beautiful.  You’ll find most have a variety of areas.  Some have features like lakes, sculptures and even orchards