An excellent day out with Siobhan, my support worker; over thirty gardens to look at in a beautiful Peak District village...and several opportunities for refreshments.
I've not been to an Open Gardens event before and didn't really know what to expect; I was worried that after only about half an hour we'd have seen everything. Well...I need not have worried, we spent three and half hours in the village and there were still a few gardens we hadn't seen. Some of the gardens are quite steep and we had to climb up and down a lot of steps and Siobhan's ankle was getting a bit sore towards the end.
The gardens didn't officially open to the public until one o'clock and so we stopped at the Peak Shopping village at Rowsley to have a look at the shops and use the toilets; the ducks even have their own place in the car park.
It was the end of season sales and I bought a fleece for only £4.99.
We drove up the hill towards Stanton-in-Peak and then along the country lane towards Birchover. Just before reaching the village we stopped at a car park with extensive views of the countryside and ate our sandwiches sitting on a large boulder.
We arrived at Birchover, parked the car in a field which had been set aside for visitors, bought our tickets, went to the toilets and then walked to a farm at the western edge of the village; this was the first garden we visited. On the way we enjoyed some lovely views.
After talking to the owner and his dog we returned to the village, calling off at the church...which is actually a converted private chapel that was built in the nineteenth century.
Next up was the Reading Rooms where we enjoyed a pot of tea and a slice of cake each; the choice of cake was very extensive.
We visited more gardens and I stopped briefly to photograph a quite old Rolls Royce car.
Even more gardens, then a stop for more refreshments from someone's conservatory; cream teas served with fresh strawberries this time.
When we got back to Doncaster we made plans to visit several more villages when they have their Open Gardens days.