Open Garden Squares Weekend winners to walk in footsteps of presidents

This year’s Open Garden Squares Weekend secret garden venue has been revealed as the US Embassy residence, Winfield House.

US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at the residence in March
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at the residence in March

On Sunday, 25 ticket holders who entered into the secret garden lottery will have the opportunity to go on a tour of the 5 hectare garden with head gardener Stephen Crisp and US ambassador Matthew Barzun.

As well as showing off the garden’s blooms and talking about the history of the site, Crisp will explain more about the garden’s ecological credentials as well as talking about its role as an important place for discussion and restful reflection.

During his time as head gardener he has welcomed five US Presidents into the garden, each of which has planted a tree.

The embassy and its garden have also been the venue for diplomatic discussions such as peace talks between Sinn Féin’s Martin McGuinness and the then Democratic Unionist Party leader Ian Paisley in the run up to the Good Friday Agreement. In 2007 the two were elected deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland and First Minister of Northern Ireland at the head of the Northern Ireland Assembly.

In March US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met to discuss de-escalating tensions in Ukraine.

Crisp said: "This is the largest private garden in central London but it’s a very hard-working house which serves at all levels. There are all sorts of meetings that are held here, the garden is a setting for the house and a sanctuary, an oasis for the family.

"It’s great that the embassy is participating in the scheme, it broadens our reach. I’m a great believer in London Open Garden Squares weekend."

The Open Garden Squares Weekend, organised by the London Parks and Gardens Trust in association with the National Trust starts tomorrow. Around 200 gardens will take part across 27 London boroughs.

Arsenal Football Club’s former pitch at Highbury Stadium redesigned by Christopher Bradley-Hole, a sustainable edible roof garden on The Nomura Building in the City and a former shoe-making college-turned community garden where local people grow flax and plants to make fabric dye are among the other gardens taking part.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Trees and Shrubs - Planting benefits

Trees and Shrubs - Planting benefits

The message that health, the environment and business all benefit from trees is finally getting through, but are nurseries seeing an upturn? Sally Drury reports.

Sargent's solutions - proper assessment of the site can help ensure smooth project delivery

Sargent's solutions - proper assessment of the site can help ensure smooth project delivery

Failing to carry out a thorough external site assessment at the start of a job can lead to big problems, warns Alan Sargent.

Horticulture Week Business Award - Retail Sales Team of the Year

Horticulture Week Business Award - Retail Sales Team of the Year

Winner - Kew Retail, RBG Kew Enterprises


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +

Survey

What kit and machinery do you most want to read about in Horticulture Week?

What kit and machinery do you most want to read about in Horticulture Week?

Horticulture Week would like your help to identify the machinery you most want to see reviewed.

HORTICULTURE WEEK Custodian Awards

Find out more about the outstanding parks, gardens and arboricultural projects and teams that became our Custodian Award 2018 winners.

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Products & Kit Resources