A short break visiting gardens on the Shropshire/Staffordshire borders

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  • KATE’S GARDENS
    A short break visiting gardens on the Shropshire/Staffordshire borders
    by Kate from Market Drayton Community Partnership

    Market Drayton is just a short drive away from some of the area’s finest gardens. From the grandeur and open
    landscapes of Trentham and the remarkable Follies of Hawkstone to the intimacy of the show-stopping
    Wollerton and Dorothy Clive Gardens, Market Drayton makes a great base for a garden-lovers’ short break.
    Depending upon plant interest, visits to each of these gardens can take between 2 and 4 hours.

    Day 1 Dorothy Clive Garden and Trentham Gardens
    Leave Market Drayton on the A53 going towards Newcastle under Lyme. At the junction with the A51 turn left towards Woore. The Gardens are about one mile on the right. The Dorothy Clive Garden, covering just 12 acres, was established in 1939, by Colonel Harry Clive who Btransformed a disused Victorian quarry into a beautiful and fascinating garden where his ailing wife Dorothy could enjoy her daily walks.
    Since then the garden has been given to the public and has many attractions including woodland gardens, a waterfall, fabulous alpines and a laburnum arch and rose walk. There is an excellent tea room serving delicious home-made food and cream teas. The gift shop sells local crafts and produce.

    The Dorothy Clive Garden
    Willoughbridge, Shropshire
    TF9 4EU
    Tel: 01630 647237
    www.dorothyclivegarden.co.uk
    Facilities are available for disabled visitors. Dogs are admitted on leads.

    On leaving the Dorothy Clive Gardens, turn right onto the A51 towards Stone. After a few hundred yards turn left onto the A53 towards Newcastle Under Lyme. After 3.7 miles turn right at the roundabout onto the Trentham Road/ A5182. Go straight across the lights onto the B5038. Turn right onto the A34 and follow the signs to Trentham Gardens.
    As well as a newly developed Italian Garden next to the Rivers of Grass and the adjacent Floral Labyrinth, there is a beautiful walk around the lake with boat rides, train rides and a fabulous playground for children.

    Trentham Gardens
    Described by Alan Titchmarsh as ‘one of the UK’s must-see gardens’. Whether you’re looking for a garden with peace and quiet, or fun and action you will find it at Trentham.
    Trentham Gardens
    Stone Road, Trentham, Stoke-on-Trent
    Sat Nav for main entrance ST4 8JG
    Tel: 01782 646646
    www.trentham.co.uk

    Day 2 Wollerton Old Hall Gardens and Hawkstone Park Follies

    Wollerton Old Hall Garden Leave Market Drayton on the A53 towards Shrewsbury. After about 3 miles, turn right following the signs for Wollerton gardens. At Wollerton the planting style has been described as ‘controlled exuberance’. There is an emphasis on perennials:
    colour, form and scale are all important. Wollerton Garden is set around a 16th Century Hall House. It covers 4 acres and has been evolving for thirty years under the care of its owners Lesley and John Jenkins. There are three north-south and three east-west vistas which are intensely cultivated and the space is divided into several separate gardens, each with its own style: the garden is bursting with plant
    and style ideas.

    Gardener and broadcaster Chris Beardshaw is a particular aficionado of Wollerton and has said ‘I can show anyone, anywhere in the world, photos of this place and they all agree that it is a world-class example of an English Garden’. Food is always freshly prepared in the Tea
    Room. Home-cooked hot and cold lunches of excellent quality are available as well as teas and snacks.

    Wollerton Old Hall Garden,
    Wollerton,
    Market Drayton
    TF9 3NA
    Tel: 01630 685760
    www.wollertonoldhallgarden.com
    Please note that unlike the other gardens described in this Guide, dogs are not permitted at Wollerton.

    Hawkstone Park Follies.
    Return to the A53 from Wollerton Gardens heading towards Shrewsbury. After about 1 mile turn right towards Hodnet. Go straight across the cross roads in Hodnet. After about half a mile turn left towards Hawkstone Park.

    Hawkstone Follies is a historic parkland that covers 100 acres. Created in the 18th Century by Sir Rowland Hill, it became known as one of the greatest historic parklands in Europe. Centred around the Red Castle and the awe-inspiring Grotto Hill, there are intricate pathways, ravines, arches and bridges, towering cliffs and follies with woodland walks that offer a delightful day out.

    Afterwards, enjoy some delicious refreshment at Caspian’s Tea Shop which serves light meals and snacks. A summary of open days for the gardens is below. Opening days and times of the gardens vary quite a lot with the seasons so do check when you plan your visits:

    Hawkstone Park Follies
    Weston-under-Redcastle
    Shrewsbury
    Shropshire
    Tel: 01948 841 700
    www.hawkstoneparkfollies.co.uk
    Dogs are allowed on leads. It should be noted that reasonable mobility is required for some of the walks at Hawkstone Follies

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