Kiftsgate Court Gardens

Littlethorpe Manor

The National Gardens Scheme

The National Gardens Scheme Charitable Trust

Over 3,800 private gardens in Britain open to the public in support of charities during the summer months. The scheme was started in 1927 at the suggestion of Miss Elsie Wagg, a member of the Council of the Queen’s Nursing Institute, as part of a national memorial to Queen Alexandra whose deep and sympathetic interest in district nursing was well known.

Since its foundation in 1927 the National Gardens Scheme has donated more than £45 million to its nominated beneficiaries and partners. In addition, individual gardens have given away more than £4 million in small donations directly to local charities of their choice. All of the nominated beneficiaries are nursing and caring charities and the scale of the NGS’s annual financial support means that it is one of the most significant charitable funders of this sector in the UK.

We visit a variety of private gardens on our tours, many of which participate in the National Gardens Scheme.

Scotland’s Garden Scheme

Scotland’s Gardens (The National Gardens Scheme’s sister organisation) was created in 1931, four years after the foundation of the NGS, and for the same purpose: opening private gardens to raise money for the training and pensions of the Queen’s Nurses, generally known as District Nurses.

Today, many types of gardens open for Scotland’s Gardens, from the grounds of grand country houses to back gardens in towns and villages. What remains of fundamental importance is that each garden must have some horticultural interest and be of a certain standard.

Some 200 charities, both large and small, benefit annually from funds raised through Scotland’s Gardens.

The National Gardens Scheme

Our Garden Tours

Passionate about beautiful gardens? Experience the finest gardens on one of our small and friendly group tours. See our tour itineraries here

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