(Photo: Colin Wing)
The Lillington Gardens Estate, designed by Darbourne & Darke for the City of Westminster, was one of the first low-rise, high-density housing estates in London. Construction started in the mid-1960s and continued until Longmoore Gardens was completed in the late 1970s. The estates were designated a conservation area in 1990 and parts are listed grade II*.
Originally the estate was landscaped as a series of green spaces with trees. Since 1996 these have been developed into a number of unique gardens planted with a wide range of shrubs, herbaceous plants and bulbs suited to the dry urban environment. Individual areas include classic mixed borders, mediterranean planting, an exotic border with yuccas, palms, agaves and cannas, a sensory garden with bubble fountain, pergolas, a Jubilee Garden, a children's garden and residents' allotments. Perennial meadows and wildlife areas and a pond have also been made to increase biodiversity.
Some borders have been replanted recently. Bedding and hanging basket plants are raised by the gardeners. The estate has won the Best Garden for Wildlife section of the Westminster in Bloom competition and has achieved a Green Flag award for excellent management and maintenance for 10 years running. It was the first social housing estate in the country to win this award. There is a playground for children under 10 accompanied by an adult. This is adapted for children with disabilities.