What a lovely weekend.  The weather decided to behave impeccably and sun shone throughout.  We had over 80 visitors (and two dogs) come to have a look round and we made £250 for the charities supported by the NGS, the highest profile of which are MacMillan Cancer Support and Marie Curie Cancer Care. 

It was definitely a weekend of firsts for our visitors.  We have always believed that the garden was suitable for wheel chairs but this was the first time we were tested on this.  I am glad to report that this visitor was able to get to all parts of the garden, even if the driver found one of the paths a little on the tight side.  It was really lovely to be able to have this family visit and enjoy their day out.

Whilst the majority of visitors came to see the garden, at least one said that the main reason she had come was to meet our dogs.  Oliver did a great job of waiting by the back gate and welcoming new arrivals.  Given the fact that the dogs were loose in the garden, we of course take precautions to avoid escapees.  There are signs on both sides of the gate asking people to make sure that they shut the gate and the helpers who welcome visitors and collect the admission money are doggy people and so are watching for any escapees.

Despite our canine focus, we have never had dogs visit before.  This year we had two, a border terrier and a golden retriever.  Both were warmly welcomed by the three dogs that we had in the garden during the opening.  The goldie stayed on the lead but, after asking our permission, the border was released and had a great time wandering around.  It was wonderful to show the ethos of the garden at work.

We had one garden designer visit who said that she has previously had clients decide to part with their dogs when they had the garden redesigned.  I just cannot comprehend how anyone could bear to do this.  Hopefully she got enough ideas to be able to prevent this happening with her clients in the future.

We had some wonderful comments from our visitors about the garden and a lot of plant names were recorded on pieces of paper.  As I suspected the lovely anemones that I bought in March were a real hit. as were our double white peonies.  Many of our visitors also took the opportunity to visit other local NGS garden in the area making a real afternoon out over a lovely weekend.

Thank you very much everyone who came and supported the NGS and its charities.