Norfolk National Garden Scheme
Olivia Chapple, John Cushing OBE and Julia Stafford Allen

Record turnout for 2020 booklet launch

A record number of garden owners were welcomed by County Organiser Julia Stafford Allen to the official 2020 Norfolk National Garden Scheme booklet launch at the Thursford Collection on Saturday 8th February.  The facilities were by kind permission of owners Mr and Mrs John Cushing.   The event marked the official launch of the 2020 Open Gardens booklet, and presented an opportunity to thank garden owners, sponsors and volunteers for their hard work, dedication and support of the scheme.  This year the guest speaker was Olivia Chapple from Horatio’s Garden, one of the beneficiaries of the National Garden Scheme.

Dr. Chapple founded Horatio’s Garden in 2011, with a vision to have a thriving garden in each of the eleven NHS spinal centres in the UK.  These amazing gardens are built to support patients and their families and friends as they recover from spinal injuries when spending many months in hospital. During the talk, Dr Chapple stressed the beneficial effect that outside space and garden rooms have on the mental health and recovery of the patients, and how getting away from the ward,  for private time with friends, and space for children to play can hugely aid recovery and rehabilitation.

Julia Stafford Allen outlined that annual visitor numbers to Norfolk open gardens are generally good, and ten gardens are opening for the Scheme for the first time this year.  Introducing new gardens to the scheme is an excellent way to increase visitor numbers and charitable income further, and asked whether experienced garden owners could be a good pathway to finding more new gardens for the scheme, either through friends, neighbours or relations who perhaps may need a little encouragement to open their garden gates to visitors.

Contact: Carol Allen, Publicity, Norfolk:  M: 07368 238528  e: [email protected]

Norfolk National Garden Scheme

About National Garden Scheme

The National Garden Scheme gives visitors unique access to over 3,500 exceptional private gardens in England and Wales, and raises impressive amounts of money for nursing and health charities through admissions, teas and cake.

Thanks to the generosity of garden owners, volunteers and visitors we have donated a total of £58 million to nursing and health charities, and made a donation of £3 million in 2019. Founded in 1927 to support district nurses, we are now the most significant charitable funder of nursing in the UK and our beneficiaries include Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie, Hospice UK and The Queen’s Nursing Institute.

The National Garden Scheme doesn’t just open beautiful gardens for charity – we are passionate about the physical and mental health benefits of gardens too. We fund projects which promote gardens and gardening as therapy, and in 2017, we launched our annual Gardens and Health Week to raise awareness of the topic.

To find your perfect garden, visit, download the National Garden Scheme app or purchase the National Garden Scheme’s Garden Visitor’s Handbook, which is published annually and available via and at all good book retailers.

For more information about Horatio’s Garden:



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