Gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen under the National Garden Scheme since lockdown began.

Two gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGSTwo gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGS

Falling Water House and Old Farm Cottage will open Saturday and Sunday afternoon (June 6 and 7), under the scheme’s new national booking system.

This system is designed to control numbers and ensure plenty of distancing for visitors and slots can be booked online.

Visitors will be able to book in two slots, at 1pm and at 3.15pm on the national website at: www.ngs.org.uk

Molesworth House will also open this Sunday (June 7) in two slots: 2pm and 3.45pm.

Two gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGSTwo gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGS

Pam Bullivant, county organiser for Cambridgeshire, said: “I am delighted that two such beautiful gardens are able to open with us at such a gorgeous time of year.

“This is only the first full weekend we’ve been able to open any gardens since we formally restarted on June 1 and it’s wonderful that Cambridgeshire has been able to make a start so quickly.”

Falling Water House is being opened by Caroline Kent, and is a woodland garden focused around several century old trees including three Wellingtonia.

Old Farm Cottage, the home of Sir Graham and Lady Fry, features three acres of orchard, grassland, woodland, a pond and a wild flower meadow.

Two gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGSTwo gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGS

It is particularly noted for several trees grown from seed, including a Ginkgo, Loquat and Manuka.

The following weekend, June 13 and 14, the ‘acer heaven’ garden at 28 Houghton Road, St Ives, is also due to open from 11am to 5pm.

This garden was recently featured in a virtual tour on the National Garden Scheme website.

Tickets for this are due to go on sale on Monday June 8.

Two gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGSTwo gardens in Staploe will be the first in Cambridgeshire to reopen. Picture: NGS

The National Garden Scheme remains one of the largest funders of nursing and caring charities in England and Wales.

Since it was founded in 1927, it has given more than £58 million to these causes through opening gardens. In 2019, almost £55,000 was raised in Cambridgeshire.

To keep alive its fundraising for these vital causes, the Scheme has been running its hugely successful ’Support our Nurses’ campaign during lockdown.

This has included dozens of videos of some on our nation’s most beautiful gardens.

They can be viewed here: https://ngs.org.uk/virtual-garden-visits-collection/

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