I had already written my article for April about all the great things we were doing in the garden, the events we were running and workshops people could join. Since then, the seriousness of Coronavirus has put everything up in the air and into perspective.
Helmsley Walled Garden will now not be opening on Saturday 28th March as planned. We are saddened to have to do this but the health of all our staff, volunteers, visitors and supporters is the most important thing to us right now. We have cancelled our events and workshops up to the end of June and will assess what we do after that based on advice from the NHS.
I would add my own small plea to those of all our magnificent NHS staff in asking people to stay at home and not to make unnecessary journeys. We will come through all of this but let’s not take risks with either our lives or those of other people.
We do need to spend time outside if we can, it is so beneficial to our mental and physical well being. As I write, the sun is shining and I want to get out and garden. If you can, spend some time in your garden, grow herbs in pots, listen to bird song and take time to enjoy what’s growing. We all rush around so much (guilty as charged) so perhaps one small good thing in these difficult times is that we can allow ourselves a little more time to stop and give ourselves a bit of self-care.
June, Heather and I will continue to be at the garden working to make it as beautiful as we can so that when we can reopen you can come and enjoy this beautiful and tranquil garden. we will be working on planting up the Hot Border and the Long Border. I will be getting to grips with the Physic Garden and I definitely want to sow some salads in the Salad House in the coming days.
In the meantime for those of you who are on social media we will be doing everything we can to stay in touch. Over the coming weeks we will be concentrating on adding to our website and our social media platforms. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
We’ll show you the garden developing, there’ll be hints and tips for your own garden and there will be some light-hearted material too. Those of you who follow us, particularly on Twitter will know I am addicted to cats, books and great art.
I love to share things and I hope you will too. Please stay in touch, contribute to any of our social media and suggest things you might want to hear about.
A big worry for us is that we are dependent on the income we get from visitor entry and our Friends to carry on maintaining and developing the garden and supporting those who need us.
As we have no idea how long this will last we are asking that if possible you might consider making a donation to help keep the garden running. If you can, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Either send a cheque made payable to Helmsley Walled Garden or go to our website at helmsleywalledgarden.org.uk/how-to-help-us/donate-fundraise/
I’ve picked a couple of beautiful pictures out of the archive to remind us all of what there will be to look forward to. In the meantime, stay safe, enjoy your garden and we will see you when we reopen.
Tricia Harris April 2020