Garden Escape

… now in some shut-in flower-garden, where the song of the birds, and the drip of the central fountain, were the only sounds, and the tree-tops made an enclosing circle in the blue June sky…’ Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell, 1864

We invite you to take a breath and enjoy a moment of peace in our little corner of nature, just like Elizabeth would have done when she wanted to escape from her writing for a few minutes.

What does Heather symbolise?


In the Victorian language of flowers, heather represents solitude, protection, beauty and love. The garden would have provided the Gaskell family with all these things, and we hope, continues to do so today.

#Game – STOP and listen. What can you hear? Can you hear any birds singing?

#Funfact about Bird song – No other animals can produce so many sounds and for so many different purposes

If the birds in our garden are quiet (or the traffic noise is too loud) click on the film below to listen to the dawn chorus recorded by the RSPB.

#Jokebreak Why do birds fly south in the winter?… Because it’s too far to walk!

Try this at home

Birds in your garden need access to clean water all year round but especially when the weather turns cold and water turns to ice. Click here to see how to make a drinking tray for small birds on the RHS website.

a whispering of leaves and perfume of flowers always pervaded the rooms

Charlotte Brontë, on visiting 84 Plymouth Grove