Chelsea 2012
May 22-30th, 2012

Tue 29 May 12 What a Way to End our Tour!!

While on our way to Highgrove we saw some magnificent fields of flax. A bit hard to get from the coach but I do have a couple for you to look at.

Our first visit is to Highgrove. Extremely hard to get into so we are so fortunate today. The only sad part is that we are not allowed to take any photographs inside the gardens so the only one I have is of the police officer walking down the lane with our paperwork to get us into the gardens. You will just have to visit it and then make your own memories of it. To say it was incredible is an understatement!

‘The garden at Highgrove embodies The Prince's environmental philosophy: that it is better to work with Nature than against it.’ The Prince of Wales has created at Highgrove one of the most admired gardens in the country.

Our very last visit on this magical tour takes us to the gardens of the late Rosemary Verey at Barnsley House. Here we are guided through the gardens by the head gardener who was here with Rosemary and as a very special treat you will enjoy a Champagne Afternoon Tea as our final time together as a group…we bid farewell to each other and to England.

“An effortless blend of traditional and contemporary”

Expertly maintained by head gardener Richard Gatenby and his team, Barnsley House’s gardens are not grand or forbidding. Instead, they’re perfect places to unwind morning, noon and night. Featuring knot gardens, statues by Simon Verity, the Laburnum Walk, and an ornamental fruit and vegetable garden, the grounds are among England’s most famous settings and what is wonderful is that Richard was Rosemary’s gardener so the connection to her still exists here even though it is in new hands.
World-famous gardener, Rosemary Verey, began redesigning Barnsley House’s gardens in the late 1950s. In 1962, her husband, David Verey, brought the Temple from Fairford Park to Barnsley House: a fitting choice for a famed architectural historian. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, a younger generation of country gardeners came to Barnsley House to learn from Rosemary’s horticultural skills.

Mrs Verey was a good ambassador for the style of English gardening that she championed in her lectures and books. Her masterpiece was Rosemary Verey's ‘Making of a Garden’ 1996, in which she told the story of how she made and maintained her garden at Barnsley. Text and pictures showed her readers exactly how to get the most out of a small space without any loss of the classic English style that she espoused. She was also asked to design gardens for the great and good. Her clients included Sir Elton John at Woodside, Princess Michael of Kent at Nether Lypiatt, the Marquess of Bute at Mount Stuart, the trustees of the New York Botanical Garden, and, above all, The Prince of Wales at Highgrove. The Prince observed: ‘Mrs Verey makes gardening seem the easiest and most natural thing in the world.' Rosemary was awarded an OBE in 1997 and the Royal Horticultural Society’s Victoria Medal of Honour in 1999. Her gardens also captivated the Prince of Wales, following his first visit to Barnsley House in 1986. Mrs Verey died at Cheltenham on May 31, 2001. The Prince returned regularly to see Rosemary and her gardens, with a final poignant visit following her funeral in June 2001.

After this glorious day of gardens and Tea, we head back to London – another tour that has gone by in the blink of an eye, but left us with so many memories to cherish and new found friends.

Wed 30th May 12 departure for home after breakfast.



  • New Eden
  • Kids Garden
  • Plant a Row Grow a Row