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Hill Close Gardens

 

Opening Times

 

Summer opening hours
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and admission charges
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Winter opening hours
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and admission charges
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Visitor Comments

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."

 

Useful Links

 

Events at Hill Close Gardens

Winter 2014-15

Friday, 6 February, Head Gardener's Special Guided Tour: Snowdrops in the Gardens, walk starts at 2.00 pm, £5 p/p including a hot drink
This is a special guided walk with the Head Gardener taking a closer look at Hill Close Gardens' growing collection of Snowdrops. There are now over 100 varieties at Hill Close including ‘Melanie Broughton’, ‘Daphne’s Scissors’ and ‘Godfrey Owen’.

Mondays-Thursdays, 2-19 February, Snowdrop Group Guided Tours
Group size 10 - 16 persons, £8 p/p including hot drink and cake
On these special guided tours for groups, the Head Gardener will take a closer look at Hill Close Gardens' growing collection of Snowdrops. There are now over 100 varieties at Hill Close including‘Melanie Broughton’, ‘Daphne’s Scissors’ and ‘Godfrey Owen’.

Please contact the Centre Manager to book a date and time, tel: 01926 493339 or email: centremanager@hcgt.org.uk

Wednesday, 11 February, Grow and Explore Outdoors: a session for children under 5, 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.

Saturday, Sunday, 14-15 February, Snowdrop Weekend
11.00 am to 4.00 pm, adults £3.50, children (5-16yrs) £1, members and children under 5yrs free
The restored Victorian gardens and their historic summerhouses will be open for the public to welcome the first signs of spring in the gardens, and are home to over 100 varieties of Snowdrop.

Varieties being shown for the first time at Hill Close include ‘Melanie Broughton’, ‘Daphne’s Scissors’ and ‘Godfrey Owen’ which will form part of the excellent indoor display by John Williams. This display will enable visitors to get up close and appreciate both the markings and the scent of these beautiful early flowers, set in the warmth of the Visitor Centre.

 Named snowdrops will be on sale along with other winter plants and bulbs, and hot drinks and cakes will be available in the Cafe.

Saturday, 21 February, Snowdrop Day
11.00 am to 4.00 pm, open in aid of the National Gardens Scheme, adults £3.50, children (5-16yrs) £1, members and children under 5yrs free
The Gardens are opening on this Saturday, which is the last day of the school half-term holiday, in order to donate the entry charges collected to the National Gardens Scheme, so please do come and enjoy the Gardens.

Saturday, 28 February, Pruning Workshop
10.00 am to 2.00 pm, tickets: £8, members £6, pre-booking is essential

Join the Head Gardener for an introduction on how to prune both top and soft fruit. This hands on course runs between 10am and 2pm and all equipment will be provided. Please bring a packed lunch. Please book early. Limited places.

To book your place, please tel: 01926 493339 or email: centremanager@hcgt.org.uk

Wednesday, 11 March, Grow and Explore Outdoors: a session for children under 5,9.30 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.

Saturday, 28 March,  Propagation Workshop
10.00 am to 2.00 pm, tickets: £8  Members £6 (pre –booking essential)

Details coming soon.

Sunday, 29 March, Spring Event for Members and Volunteers: talk and tour
2.30 pm – 4.30 pm
On the last weekend in March, Hill Close Gardens Trust invites all members and volunteers of the Gardens to a talk and tour round the gardens. It is a great opportunity to find out what has been happening over the Winter period. The event begins with a talk by the Head Gardener followed by a tour round the gardens.

Refreshments in the form of tea, coffee, hot chocolate, soft drinks and cake will be served in the Visitor Centre.

For other children's events and information about the children's trails more>

For a list of all the events this season more>

Group Visits
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

Apples, apples, apples.....

A display of unusual varieties of apples

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.