Want to get news alerts delivered direct to your inbox?Edit your email preferences
New research from Investec Wealth & Investment reveals that Britain's garden obsession extends well beyond their own fence with nearly one in three (31%) - or 14.7million - British adults visiting a garden open to the public in the last 12 months.
The research, which was commissioned to coincide with the launch of The National Gardens Scheme's (The NGS) Yellow Book 2012 - which Investec Wealth & Investment sponsors, reveals that more people visited a garden open to the public than visited a theme park (21%), an art gallery (20%) or went to a professional football match (17%). In total, there were 47.5million garden visits in the last 12 months generating an estimated £341.8million for the UK economy.
This year The NGS celebrates its 85th anniversary and will raise a projected £2.6million for its elected charities through garden visits. The Yellow Book, which has been produced for the last 80 years, contains listings for all of the 3,800 private gardens in England and Wales that are open for The NGS during 2012 and is a crucial element in raising funds for its beneficiary charities.
Table 1: Popular days out by % of people visiting
|Type of attraction||% of GB adults visiting in the last 12 months|
|Garden open to the public||31%|
|Country fair/county show||19%|
|Professional football match||17%|
Jonathan Wragg, chief executive of Investec Wealth & Investment, said: "The British love affair with the garden is well documented and this research goes to show just how popular garden visits are. It's no surprise, then, that at 80 years' old, the Yellow Book is still going strong, with details of more gardens this year than at any time in its history. The Yellow Book provides a wealth of information and inspiration to garden visitors as well as raising significant funds for its nominated charities and we are immensely proud to have been supporting it for the last 18 years."
George Plumptre, chief executive of The NGS, said: "Since we started in 1927 we have donated more than £35million to nursing, caring and gardening charities. The popularity of gardens with the British public, combined with the generosity of the garden owners who devote an inordinate amount of time to preparing their gardens, have made the Scheme so amazingly successful.
"Producing a guide with over 3,800 gardens enables us to showcase the full extent of the NGS scheme, and through this we hope to attract large numbers of visitors to our member gardens across the country. We are very grateful to Investec Wealth & Investment for their continued support."
This year, for the first time, the Yellow Book will also be available as an iPhone app, helping people plan their garden visits and also link with friends and coordinate garden trips together.
Key Features of the 2012 Yellow Book
• During 2012 there will be over 7,700 separate openings
• Average entry price is around £3.50 and under 16s go free in 2,800 gardens
• Over 2,500 gardens provide refreshments for visitors
• 80 or so gardens host a Plant Heritage Collection
The Yellow Book 2012 costs £9:99 and is available on-line from www.ngs.org.uk and from most leading booksellers.
Currently The NGS's primary nursing and caring beneficiaries are The Queen's Nursing Institute (QNI), Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Help the Hospices, Crossroads Care and Perennial. Each charity currently receives an annual donation and the NGS is the biggest single benefactor for both Macmillan Cancer Support's and Marie Curie. To date Macmillan has received more than £13 million and Marie Curie more than £5 million. In addition to annual donations the NGS also has an annual guest charity which for 2012 is the Alzheimer's Society.
About The National Gardens Scheme (The NGS)
• Founded in 1927, The National Gardens Scheme (NGS) has donated more than £22 million to charity in the last ten years.
• The NGS will give £2.6 million in 2012 to nursing and other caring charities from money raised by opening more than 3,800 private gardens in England and Wales.
• The 2012 edition of the famous Yellow Book, listing opening details of all 3800 gardens is available to purchase from bookstores and garden centres or it can be ordered direct from the NGS
• Charities supported by The National Gardens Scheme include Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Help the Hospices, Crossroads Care and Alzheimer's Society.
For more information about The National Gardens Scheme, please visit www.ngs.org.uk