Great floral treats await at Invitation to View properties
And Mother’s Day is the time to say it with flowers. So why not give Mum a unique floral treat to look forward courtesy of Invitation to View? With our online tickets, it’s never too late to find the perfect gift…
Daffodils, Tudor primroses, hellebore hybrids and herbaceous borders; spectacular shows of azaleas, rhododendrons and exotic palms – all these and many more feature in the varied and colourful 2018 bouquet of over 90 country properties opening up their private garden gates and historic house doors through the unique ‘Invitation to View’ scheme. Simply take a look through our portfolio here online, take your pick and treat Mum to the perfect Mother’s Day gift of a ticket or two to join enjoyable, exclusive tours, led mostly by the engaging property owners themselves and topped off with delicious tea and homemade cakes.
View heritage blooms like Old English tulips or Crown Imperials around the Cambridgeshire walled garden of Netherhall Manor in the company of its expert garden writer owner, then sit back to take in tunes from a rare square piano. Dream away at the rolling vistas from the charming gardens of Suffolk’s Columbine Hall near Stowmarket on a tour with owner and renowned gardens and interiors journalist, Leslie Geddes-Brown. Or perhaps take time to ponder the collection of historic marmite jars retrieved from the property’s defensive moat. Whether you love or hate some of the whimsical wonders just waiting to be encountered, each Invitation to View tour is a true unexplored treasure trove that’s always impressively individual and wonderfully personal – just like any Mother’s Day gift should be.
E-tickets are immediately available online and there’s even a downloadable brochure with little tasters of their unique history, garden greats and must-see treasures to pop inside your Mother’s Day card perhaps.
Check out special treats of the floral kind at Morton Hall near Redditch in Worcestershire, home to one of the country’s largest fritillary meadows, the delightful walled pleasure gardens of Ingatestone Hall in Essex or Wingfield College’s eccentric Suffolk topiary. Devon’s Thorn House boasts a fruitful offering of an orangery and exotic planting, yet over in the East Anglian tropics of Henstead near Beccles, there are bananas and bamboos galore.
But what’s all this about a Spider Garden lurking in the Norfolk rhododenron-rich grounds of Repton’s fine Regency creation, Hoveton Hall, or a ‘banjo’ yew allée at nearby Hockwold Hall? Invitation to View is sure to play a merry tune as it leads its special guests down rarely visited garden paths, and yet from the romantic 18th century confections of Spencer’s Garden in Essex to the beautiful much-loved borders surrounding Norfolk’s Bressingham Hall or newly created formal terraced gardens and timeless wild waterside woodlands at Suffolk’s Letheringham Water Mill on the Deben, it is somehow always sure to please.
Typically Invitation to View tours last around 2 hours and include delicious refreshments plus time to discover more about the gardens or grounds at leisure. Every tour – just like every property in the portfolio – is irresistibly unique, taking place on selected dates only with spaces limited according to the nature of the property. Ticket prices start from just £12 per person and are available here online or by calling the Mercury Theatre box office on 01206 573948. Alternatively you can download a gift voucher, valid for any of this year’s tours, from https://www.mercurytheatre.co.uk/gift-vouchers/
Just a few suggestions – but there are plenty more, so take your pick!
- Millichope Park , Shropshire – daffodils (March) bluebells ( May)
- Netherhall Manor, Cambridgeshire – early hellebore hybrids, Tudor primroses, Edwardian hyacinths (March) Old English tulips, crown imperials, daffodils (April) Victorian pelargoniums, heliotropes, dahlias (Aug)
- Morton Hall, Worcestershire – fritillaries (May)
- Hoveton Hall, Norfolk ; Brynkinalt Hall, Shropshire – rhododendrons and azaleas (May)
- Coughton Court private wing, Warwickshire – herbaceous borders (June); roses and herbaceous borders (July and Sept)