Tickets available now for new-look Highdown Gardens

Released: Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Highdown Gardens logo 2021 (250px)

Tickets for Highdown Gardens entry are available today (Tuesday 11th May 2021) as a new website reflecting the £1m changes made at the jewel-in-the-crown attraction is launched.

The Gardens reopen free to the public on Wednesday 2nd June 2021 after a year of renovation and innovation which will help preserve them for generations to come to enjoy.

Because of Covid restrictions entry to the gardens is, temporarily, by ticket only although entry is without charge as normal. Visitors will be able to book a two-hour slot with space limited to 30 people at a time. For the summer months the Gardens will be open till dusk but bookings will still be necessary. Social distancing guidelines will be in place.

Finishing touches are now being put on the Worthing Borough Council-owned Gardens' upgrade which has been funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

PR19-098 - Sir Frederick Stern

The money is being spent to preserve the legacy of the Gardens' founder Sir Frederick Stern (photo right) who battled against the odds to create a famous garden of exotic plants from around the world on unforgiving chalk soil. The cataloguing and propagation of many of the rare species in the garden is about to begin.

The funds have also been used to increase accessibility to the gardens and to tell the fascinating story, social and horticultural, of the establishment of Highdown between the World Wars and the work undertaken since by the Borough Council to maintain them.

A new visitors' centre has replaced the old head gardener's bungalow, new pathways will allow wheelchair access from the entrance to the new building and onto a new sensory garden. New greenhouses have also been built to help conserve plants and to breed some of the endangered species within the garden.

A new plant heritage officer will begin the task of discovering and cataloguing all of the plants that Stern grew in the garden, many of which came from China and the Far East, brought to Highdown by intrepid plant hunters.

Highdown Gardens project manager Gwenn Parker-Tregoat said:

“We really are getting close now to welcoming back visitors who come from near and far to see these beautiful gardens.

“For the time being we are asking people to go to the website and book a slot to visit. There should be plenty of space for those who want to come and enjoy the grounds as they burst into a riot of summer colour.”

The new website reflects the new branding for the gardens as well as telling the fascinating story of the gardens, its plants and the famous people who came to visit.

Photo: The new visitors' centre which has replaced the old head gardener's bungalow

PR21-066 - Highdown Gardens is set to be reopened this summer following a £1M improvement scheme (new visitor centre)

Photo: The remodelled entrance to Highdown Gardens and new pathways that allow wheelchair access

PR21-054 - The remodelled entrance to Highdown Gardens

PR21-068 - New pathways that allow wheelchair access

Photo: New greenhouses have been built to help conserve plants and to breed some of the endangered species

PR21-054 - New greenhouses have been built to help conserve plants and to breed some of the endangered species

Photo: View across Highdown Gardens

PR20-171 - View across Highdown Gardens

Highdown Gardens logo 2021 (730px)

(PR21-068)

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Page last updated: 17 June 2021