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Coronavirus Kent: Gardens to remain open virtually during lockdown as part of National Garden Scheme appeal

While the country is in lockdown, the National Garden Scheme has come up with a creative way for people to access Kent's beautiful gardens without stepping outside.

The Support Our Gardens Appeal means landscapes in four areas across the county will be open for virtual tours.

Great Comp Garden, Sevenoaks. Picture:National Garden Scheme
Great Comp Garden, Sevenoaks. Picture:National Garden Scheme

By going online, you can now walk through the acres at Riverhill Himalayan Gardens and Great Comp near Sevenoaks, as well as visit Godinton House in Ashford.

The everyday seaside gardens of Whitstable also have their very own dedicated tours.

Some 191 gardens were due to open across Kent this season and more will be opening for virtual visits soon.

The National Garden Scheme usually donates money raised through admissions to nursing and health charities.

Now the gardens are closed, it hopes people will donate on virtual tours to keep the funding going.

Riverhill Himalayan, Sevenoaks, Picture: National Garden Scheme
Riverhill Himalayan, Sevenoaks, Picture: National Garden Scheme

Mary Berry, president of the National Garden Scheme, said: "Right now people are not able to visit the gardens and there is no money being raised. In fact, as things are, the charity’s income is likely to be down by 80% during 2020.

"Garden owners have recorded videos of their gardens to make a series of ‘virtual visits’ and we are inviting everyone who might have visited a garden to watch a virtual visit instead and think of giving a donation to the charity."

National Garden Scheme CEO, George Plumptre added: "The wonderful content that we are sharing while our gardens are closed provides an inspirational reminder of exactly why gardens and gardening are so important to us all.

"And, with your continued support while we are virtually open we hope to ensure that we continue to open the gates to exceptional gardens, champion gardens for health, and support some of the most vital nursing charities in the country for many years to come."

New videos will be released every Thursday.

To watch a virtual tour, click here.

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