Garden event promises rooms with views
Mike and Liz Thomas will be opening their delightful garden in Brentwood to the public on Sunday, July 26, to support Saint Francis Hospice.
"We enjoy our garden and thought it would be a good idea to open it to the public so we can raise money for the hospice," said Mike, 64, a former CEO of Aston Group, which has donated more than £15,000 to the hospice over the years.
"A friend of mine was looked after by the hospice and I know from all my friends about the good work that it does.
"I like to support small charities and if I can help in any way then I am happy to do that."
The garden, which is almost an acre long and divided into rooms with themed borders, showcases an incredible variety of exotic and unusual plants and flowers along with fruit and vegetable plots, a spring and summer meadow and unique water features.
"Every room has a different mood," said the father of two.
"It is so peaceful and you do not feel that you are right in the middle of Brentwood."
The couple, who have developed the garden over 20 years, have included an oriental section with a striking red pagoda and running stream.
There is even a remarkably authentic looking ruin to capture the imagination.
And while many of the natural delights can be easily observed some are to be discovered, such as Liz's secret slate and white flowered garden.
"This is something I always wanted, "said Liz, 61. "Most of the flowers are scented so in the evening the scents blow you away."
The area is also a haven for wildlife including birds, badgers, moles and toads and they encourage mini beasts with an insect home made from recycled tiles and pallets.
Visitors will have ample opportunity to sit back and soak up the beautiful surroundings and peaceful atmosphere on one of the many seating areas perfectly placed around the nature retreat while enjoying a cup of tea and a slice of cake.
To truly appreciate the garden's beauty, you need to experience it for yourself so come along to 262 Hatch Road, Pilgrims Hatch, Brentwood, Essex, CM15 9QR from 11.30am to 4pm.
Entry costs £4 for adults and children go free. There is wheelchair access and disabled parking available.
Visitors are also welcome to use the car park at The Brentwood Centre.