Thanks to Open Garden Squares Weekend, every June us Londoners get a flash of the capital’s best green bits without, for once, the need to scale a fence or crowbar wrought iron railings. Excitingly, OGSW is back for a 16th year and returns to the capital for 2014 with a programme hotter than last summer’s heatwave.
OGSW sees London’s most luscious, leafy and often locked-down gardens open their gates to the public for one or two days only, with most hosting exclusive grounds tours and one-off workshops. If you’re thinking that the patch of grass behind your office, where you sit sipping gin form a tin on a Friday night is all the green space you need to see this summer, think again. Over the weekend of June 14 and June 15, exclusively for OGSW, Number 10 Down Downing Street and Highbury Square, home of Arsenal Football Club up until 2006, are set to scrap their customary VIP policy and let in the riff-raff for a peek at their perfectly kept pots, planters and petunias. Other venues taking part this year include the stunning Osterley House, whose Grade I-listed garden houses lemon trees and home-grown vegetable displays, and Jamyang Buddhist Centre, an oasis of a garden set around a magnificent gold Buddha centrepiece.
Filling your diary for June now may seem a tad premature, but tickets for Open Garden Squares Weekend go on sale today (tickets are £10 for the weekend and include entry to all gardens), with a public ballot taking place for entry into Number 10 Downing Street and Highbury Square.
Get more information and buy your tickets for Open Garden Squares Weekend here.