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Garden News Reveals the Top 100 Visitor Gardens In The UK

The Lost Gardens of Heligan in Cornwall has been named the UK’s top visitor garden by readers of Garden News magazine.

Readers voted in their thousands in the annual poll to find the Garden News Best 100 Gardens in the UK.

The Lost Gardens of Heligan took the top spot this year with Bodnant Gardens in Wales the runner-up and Alnwick Castle in Northumberland coming third. 

The Lost Gardens of Heligan, originally built in the 18TH century before becoming one of the UK’s foremost gardens in the Victorian era, were literally lost for more than 70 years after the start of the First World War, when the gardeners were conscripted and Heligan House became a hospital.  Over the years the wonderful gardens became swallowed by brambles and ivy and it was only a devastating hurricane in 1990 that revealed what lay beneath.  The visionary Tim Smit set about the restoration in the early 1990s and the stunning result is the garden we see today.

Garden News editor Simon Caney added: “The UK is blessed with so many wonderful gardens but The Lost Gardens of Heligan is a very worthy winner.  As soon as you step through the gates you can sense that it’s a really magical place and its wonderful background story makes it only more fascinating.  There’s something for everyone here and any visitor can’t fail to be inspired – you could lose yourself very happily for many hours here.”

“We were also very pleased with the wide range of gardens that made up our Best 100 and it’s great to see our top three coming from Cornwall, Wales and Northumberland respectively.  Garden News readers are very passionate and know what makes a garden great.”

Heligan MD, George Elworthy, said: “We’re incredibly honoured to have been voted the UK’s favourite visitor garden by Garden News.  This represents a lot of hard work across our whole team throughout the year.  We’d like to thank everybody who took the time to vote.  To be recognised by such a discerning audience makes us all very proud.”

Alasdair Moore, Heligan manager of Gardens and Estate, added:  “I’m delighted we’ve won this prestigious accolade for two reasons – receiving it from such a highly respected horticultural publication as Garden News and secondly being voted for by their readers in a public vote.”

This week’s Garden News is on sale today (Tuesday 20th August), the full list of 100 Best Visitor Gardens in the UK can be found in the magazine. 

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