Gordale garden centre holds free talks and demonstrations fortnightly offering advice on a whole range of gardening topics, including planting bulbs, making compost and walled fruit. These are always very well received with attendance regularly exceeding 40 people.
Local schools benefit with Gordale's participation in National Tree Week. Gordale contacts local schools and invites pupils and staff to come along and learn all about native trees, including how to look after and plant them. Each school is then given two trees to take away and plant in the school grounds.
Gordale also welcomes free school visits with sessions linked to key stages that aim to inform the children on a wide spectrum of topics including: Garden plants and how they grow, Herbs and vegetables - easy to grow and delicious to eat, The changing seasons - colours, sights and sounds; What's in soil? What sort do plants love? and Insects and minibeasts - bugs, beetles, birds and bees all in our back gardens.
Fundraising for local and national charities is another way in which Gordale gets involved with the local community. Guide Dogs for the Blind, RNLI, St John's Hospice and Hospice of the Good Shepherd are among the many charities that Gordale has helped raise in excess of £20,000 over the qualifying period. Gordale does this by not only allowing the charities to collect funds at the centre but also by holding talks and demonstrations throughout the year, the proceeds of which go to charity.
Gordale also provides a Christmas grotto for three local charities to run. All the money they take, they keep. Last year, over £15,000 was raised from the grotto in a space of four weeks.
Gordale holds an annual fun day, which is free entry and has a range of events including beat the goalie, a craft marquee, inflatable assault course and coconut shy. Local charities are invited along to fundraise and local businesses also benefit by being invited along, free of charge, to promote and sell their products.
Whitehall Garden Centre - Community events and fundraising
The Gardens Group - Growing with the Community
Sinclair Horticulture Winner of the 2009 Which? Gardening best peat-free compost award, Sinclair Horticulture is pleased to supply garden centres with top-quality composts, plant foods and an extensive range of other products.