Spirit of Christmas
1 December 2013
"I would just like to say how much my family and I enjoyed the day. We have lived in Warwick all of our lives and have never before been to Hill Close but we will certainly be back soon.
The staff (volunteers) on Sunday were a credit to any organisation, they were helpful, informative, friendly and fun. They encouraged my 2 year old son to take part without being pushy and he loved every minute of it. He especially enjoyed the bell ringing and Santa (who was excellent). The entire event was professionally run and a pleasure to be part of."
Tuesday, 28 July, Heartbreak Productions Drama: Love's Labour's Lost
Picnic in Gardens from 5.30 pm, drama starts at 7.00 pm. Tickets £13, concessions £10.50
Once again Heartbreak Productions are coming to Hill Close Gardens. This year they will perform Love's Labour's Lost, a very popular and amusing Shakespeare play. The Gardens will open at 5.30 pm so you can come and enjoy your picnic on the lawn before the performance starts. The cafe will be open serving hot and cold drinks before the performance starts and during the interval.
To learn more about Heartbreak Productions and the play they are performing, Love's Labour's Lost, please go to their website: heartbreakproductions.co.uk
Saturday and Sunday, 1-2 August, Lammas Harvest Weekend
Normal weekend opening time and entry charges
Lammas Day - the harvest festival on August 1st dating back to Anglo-Saxon times – will be celebrated with a special Harvest Weekend and Lammas Food Festival at Hill Close. This marks the location of Hill Close Gardens, at the edge of Lammas land in Warwick, and the important role played by The Lammas & District Residents Association in the rescue and restoration of the gardens.
Come and see vegetables and fruit growing alongside the flowers in these 16 Victorian garden plots, with their listed brick-built summerhouses. Learn the history behind the Lammas harvest and Lammas loaves.
Enjoy watching the skill of local artisan bakers Bread & Co (more>) and Bread for Life (more>), who will be giving bread making demonstrations on Sat (Bread & Co at 2.00 pm and 3.15 pm), and Sun (Bread For Life at 2.30 pm) afternoons respectively. See how milling is still carried in the traditional fashion at our local watermill, Charlecote Mill (more>).
Additionally, on Sunday 2nd, Children's Yummy Creations and Toys Tea Party takes place all day. So come and share a Lammas loaf with us.
Sunday, 2 August, Toy's Tea Party
11.00 am to 4.30 pm, normal weekend entry charges, children must be accompanied by an adult
Bring your favourite toy with you and enjoy a tea party with Yummy treats. The tea party will take place in the children's garden (KIDZONE) and you will be able to create your own edible fresh food items with the help of our volunteers. Do join us.
Friday, 14 August, Head Gardener's Guided Tour
2.30 pm to 3.30 pm, no extra charge for talk. Normal entry charges to the Gardens will apply.
Come and join the Head Gardener in an informal walk round Hill Close Gardens, which are under his professional care. The focus of the walk is on plants of seasonal interest as well as the new developments in both planting schemes and layout of the different individual gardens. The walks are tailored to match the interest of the participants with plenty of time for discussion and questions. Old varieties of vegetables are grown and are for sale when in season. The Gardens also have a valuable collection of more than 60 different varieties of apples and pears.
Thursday, 27 August, Teddy Bear's Picnic
2.00 pm to 5.00 pm, £4 per child, £1.50 per adult, no need to book for this event
Bring along a picnic and your favourite bear or cuddly toy and spend a fun-filled afternoon in our delightful gardens. The Teddy Doctor will be in residence in one of the summer houses if you wish her to check that your teddy and/or toy is fit and well.
Friday, 28 August, Apple Walk: Head Gardener's Guided Tour
2.30 pm to 3.30 pm, no extra charge
On this special walk the apple tree collection in the gardens will be the main topic for discussion.
Grow and Explore Outdoors: a session for children under 5yrs
9.30 am to 11.00 am, cost: £3 for first child in family, each additional child £1, under 1's free
Come to play and explore the Gardens. The activities will be both indoor and outdoor whatever the weather, so please dress appropriately! Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
These popular monthly sessions will recommence in October so watch this space ......
For other children's events and information about the children's trails more>
For a list of all the events this season more>
Groups of 10 and over can visit the gardens at any time throughout the year for guided tours. The charge is £8 a head to include entrance, a guide and tea and cake in the Centre (minimum charge £80). This is an opportunity to learn about the history and restoration of the gardens with their rich variety of Victorian fruit and flowers, the design and building of the sustainable Hill Close Centre. For further information contact the Centre Manager on tel 01926 493339 or email centremanager@ hcgt.org.uk
Autumn and Apple Day always bring visitors to see the historic apple collection
Since 1856 apples, pears and plums were known to have been grown in the Gardens as well as soft fruit. Now there are more than 60 different varieties in the Gardens. By the 1990s, the trees were totally overgrown with swags of ivy and brambles. Noreen Jardine, assisted by Geoff Croft and many volunteers, started a programme of clearing and restoring these trees to bring them back to growth and fruit bearing.
The next task was to identify them and this was pursued with energy and persistence by Noreen and eventually most of the trees were named. There is one which has yet to be named. More varieties were planted in 2002 and subsequent years.
The season starts with the earliest dessert apple ‘Beauty of Bath’ 1864, followed by the small deep-red ‘Devonshire Quarrendon’ 1676. The early cookers include ‘Arthur Turner’ 1850 and there is the dual purpose ‘James Grieve’ 1893.
Some of the mid-season apples are ‘Queen’ 1858, ‘Newton Wonder’ 1870 and ‘Peasgood Nonsuch’ 1853, a very large dual purpose apple. 'Lord Derby’ 1862 and ‘Wyken Pippin’ 1703 are late in the season, which finishes with the russets ‘Golden Knob’ 1600s, which last well into the New Year.