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Gardeners dig deep at annual plant lovers' special charity day

PUBLISHED: 06:00 30 May 2018

Record numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake Abbey

Record numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake Abbey

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Record numbers of visitors enjoyed a charity gardening day at north Norfolk's Creake Abbey, raising more than £4,000 for a vital Wells service.

Record numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake AbbeyRecord numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake Abbey

A total of 1,600 people attended the Creake Abbey Plant Lovers’ Day, on May 27.

The gates were opened early to accommodate the queue of green-fingered visitors to the annual horticultural event, which has raised more than £20,000 for Wells Community Hospital Trust over the past decade.

And visitors on Sunday dug deep into their pockets, raising a record £4,218.

The hospital has provided a range of health and wellbeing services to the Wells community for more than 100 years. It is now partnered with a horticultural therapy scheme, The Nurture Project, to offer a pilot programme of year-round supervised gardening to support adults with mental ill health.

Record numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake AbbeyRecord numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake Abbey

Both the hospital and the project were represented at the Creake Abbey event, with information stands distributing educational material.

Diana Brocklebank Scott, founder of Creake Abbey, said: “We are thrilled to have raised almost £4,000 for the Wells Community Hospital Trust.

“We fully support the excellent work The Nurture Project is doing at the Hospital and were delighted to have given them both prominent positions within this year’s event.

“We were blessed with beautiful weather and record crowds – thank you to all who attended.”

Record numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake AbbeyRecord numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake Abbey

Samantha Taylor, general manager of the Wells Community Hospital Trust said: “We use this money to fund the hospital, as we get no core funding from the NHS.

“Each year we have to raise thousands, so this is an enormous amount towards our total for the year and we are eternally grateful.”

Plant Lovers’ Day welcomed 35 specialist garden nurseries from Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex as well as leading horticulturists from as far afield as Kent, with perennials, exotics, bulbs, shrubs, climbers and vegetables featuring.

Gary Nelson from the Burn Valley Nursery in South Creake, said: “Fantastic crowds, impressive sales and great feedback from visitors.

Record numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake AbbeyRecord numbers of visitors attended Creake Abbey's plant day. Photo: Creake Abbey

“A real success for us!”

Creake Abbey is free and open to the public.

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