Thursday, 20 March 2014

Spring, Working Together and an extraordinary swim

Can Business Meetings ever be uplifting? Perhaps it had something to do with the arrival of Spring, but the Association of Gardens Trusts' first Business Meeting of this year certainly was.  It's always a good time for the County Gardens Trust (CGT) representatives and our Working Together partners to share news of what is happening, but this year it seemed to be particularly positive and forward looking.

(copyright - Liz Ware)
Five of the Trusts are celebrating significant anniversaries.  Welsh Historic Gardens Trust and the Isle of Wight Gardens Trust are 25 years old this year.  Hampshire Gardens Trust has been working with its county's parks, landscapes and designed spaces for 30 years, while Cheshire Gardens Trust is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

It's not so long ago that we were discussing the need to work more closely with The Garden History Society (GHS), Parks & Gardens UK and the Garden Museum. While discussions continue about developing a closer relationship between the AGT and the GHS, the Garden Museum and Parks & Gardens UK are collaborating on an exhibition.  Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the exhibition will focus on the impact of WW1 on gardens and gardening.  It opens in the Garden Museum in September, but there's still time for CGTs to contribute to Parks & Gardens UK's webpage dedicated to the project.  For more information see .

Many CGTs are already tweeting about their activities. An excellent pre-Business Meeting workshop organised by our Historic Landscape Project Officers will have given even more Trusts the confidence to sign up to social media.  Of course, our Working Together partners are making good use of it too. Have a look at Parks & Gardens UK's new blog, managed by Trustee, David Marsh.

The Garden Museum's calendar is as busy as ever.  If you haven't booked a place at this year's Garden Literary Festival (21st-22nd June), there's still time to do so.  For many of us, last year's Festival (the first of its kind) was a particular highlight in an already spectacular summer.

As the flood waters subside and some of us venture back along the banks of the Thames, Christopher Woodward, Director of the Garden Museum is planning to spend an inordinate amount of time in, rather than alongside, the river.  News of his previous fund raising swimming adventures has always made good reading. His next swim could be the most challenging yet.  Join us in supporting him and an exciting new chapter in the life of the Garden Museum.

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