It is easy to think of Strawberry Hill House as simply the most original Gothic Castle. Whilst this is true it is actually much much more than just an extraordinary building. It is also the heart of a supportive community reaching out to help so many local people.
In addition to the thriving educational programme offering life-long learning across a broad range of subjects and crafts , The Strawberry Hill House Trust offers targeted activities and courses working with isolated and vulnerable groups in society.
Feel Good Garden:
A relatively new initiative is the inclusion of a Feel Good Garden in the Grounds of Strawberry Hill House. Successful pilot projects have been run throughout 2015, and Strawberry Hill House are now fundraising to develop a sustainable long term Feel Good Garden programme of regular monthly sessions.
This programme is breaking ground in a growing movement of social prescribing in primary health care and Strawberry Hill House are working in collaboration with agencies such as the Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends, Age UK, local care homes and housing partnerships to promote wellbeing and tackle isolation in the community. The regular monthly sessions will be run by a specialist team of skilled practitioners led by Claire Leighton, Community Development Manager: medical herbalist Janine Gerhardt, community artist Frances Kiernan, horticulturalist Sally Stratton and qualified nurse and trainee horticultural therapist Georgina Simonelli.
Strawberry Hill House Feel Good Garden Morning:
This special Feel Good Garden Morning is all about discovering the garden at Strawberry Hill House, including a tour, learning about the therapeutic value of gardens and everyday herbs that you can grow in your garden to benefit you and your family.
10.30 arrive for welcoming coffee and refreshments and meet Kate Robinson, gardener and the Strawberry Hill House team.
10.45 Talk by Claire Leighton, Community Development Manager, about the Strawberry Hill House Therapy Garden and plans for the future.
11.00 Tour of Strawberry Hill House Garden with Kate Robinson.
"Horace Walpole created from 1747 the first landscape garden to be connected to a picturesque house. His 9 acres (3.64 hectares) contained a lawn and a meadow beyond, flanked by trees and an open terrace with views of the River Thames. The views have been lost to housing and the growth of woodland but the grassed areas and the layout of his tree planting survive.
The garden is as far as possible being restored to its original appearance. The tour will include a replica of Walpole's extraordinary Shell Bench, replacement planting of his Grove of lime trees and, of course, the Feel Good Garden."
11.45 Talk and demonstration by Janine Gerhardt, medicinal herbalist with the opportunity for questions and discussion.
Tickets: Everyone welcome. Tickets are £20 per head with all money going direct to help fund running the Feel Good Garden on a regular basis to provide consistent care for this vulnerable community.