(Photo: SHARE Community)
This beautiful 2.5-acre walled garden, set within the grounds of Springfield University Hospital, maintains a strong link with its historic past in both planting and function.
The project is based in the Gillian Webb Memorial Garden, which was once the male airing court in the days when Springfield was the Surrey County Pauper Lunatic Asylum. In 1841, the space was laid out with vegetable plots maintained by the patients. Today Share Community, a charity that provides training and employment support for disabled adults, uses the space as a hub for its thriving horticultural training project.
The site includes a number of polytunnels and a glasshouse, which trainees use all year round to produce bedding plants, food crops and decorative plants to use in Share's kitchen or for sale. Other features include colourful herbaceous and shrub borders, herbs, fruit bushes and trees, and a wildlife pond.
The site includes a 'bee-lovely' garden, sponsored by Neal's Yard Remedies, which has been specially planted to encourage bees.
The garden is also the headquarters of Share Gardening, one of Share's social enterprises, which provides garden maintenance and planting services.
Capital Growth garden:
Horticulture Training Manager: