Villagers show-off their gardens for charity
Once every three years, villagers in Westbourne invite thousands of people to wander around their gardens.
After spending months ensuring their roses and herbaceous borders are perfect, they throw open their gardens for one day only for National Open Gardens Weekend.
This year it falls on Sunday, June 17, and more than 20 homeowners will be inviting garden lovers to enjoy the experience of wandering through the village and opening their gates.
Delights include small, exquisitely designed patio gardens; those with water meandering through them; carefully manicured and tastefully planted mature gardens; large spaces with impressive vistas and gardens designed and planted to show standard.
Emma Weatherstone is one of those taking part.
She said: ‘We are so excited about hosting this event and our team of garden-loving volunteers have been working hard behind the scenes and in the garden to make this the biggest event to date. We’re praying for a sunny day!
‘Our last event in 2015 raised more than £11,000 and we were pleased to be able to give money to local charities and organisations such at St Wilfrid’s Hospice, Westbourne Primary School, Emsworth Community Transport, Parish Church, Westbourne WI and Westbourne Scouts.
‘The event will be a family attraction with a treasure trail for children, A quality raffle with some amazing prizes, afternoon teas in the village hall with Westbourne WI, and a barbecue at Westbourne Primary School with the children showcasing the results of their green fingers.’
Emma added: ‘I love being involved in this event as it really brings a community together, businesses and residents alike across all age groups. The support we get is wonderful.
‘This year we are collaborating with campaign group, The Final Straw and will be looking at reducing all single-use plastics, straw and water bottle.
‘We will be encouraging visitors to bring their own water bottles and will have water refill stations in the gardens.’
There will also be wine tasting, teas on the rectory lawn and plant sales. The cost of entry is £8, to cover all gardens.
Gardens open from 10.30am to 5pm with a large, free, clearly sign-posted car park being available on the day.
For more information, go to westbourneopengardens.co.uk.