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Visiting Britain's Splendid Historic Gardens This Spring

Posted by Rebecca Shaw on March 3, 2023

English Garden at Hampton Court Palace

Seeking Out the Best of Britain's Venues for Garden Walks

Britain is home to many beautiful historic houses and castles and these magnificent venues provide some of our favourite walks, exploring the beautiful grounds and gardens.

As we head into spring, it’s always a joy to seek out new places to visit and take in some fresh air in the milder weather. For those of us with mobility issues, a disability, or a need for a little extra support with walking, there are many walking aids available that can really make a difference getting out and about. Having the correct mobility aids allow us to fully relax and appreciate the great outdoors.

English country garden gate

Inspiration for Our Own Gardens

With fresh springtime blooms appearing, taking a relaxing stroll through gardens is a wonderful way to linger in nature and to draw inspiration for our own gardens.

Often, many British venues boast fabulous landscaping with ornamental features, which offer inspiration for the green fingered amongst us. Whilst our own plots may admittedly be rather less grand than a stately manor or historic castle, we can still take in the horticultural beauty of these sites and have our imagination sparked for our own outdoor space, however humble in comparison. In fact, no matter how limited our space may be, even the smallest of plots can be transformed into a little haven of greenery to enjoy, a private place to sit and play, or to relax and enjoy some peace.

British garden with flowerbeds and ornament

Kew Gardens, the Largest and Most Diverse Botanical Collection

A favourite destination we love to explore is Kew Gardens, Richmond, founded in 1840. If you have ever visited the Royal Botanic Garden that is Kew, you will already know that there is a vast amount to see and enjoy, whether you are interested in the diverse range of plant life, or are particularly taken by historic architecture.

Over 5000 living plants can be found across this UNESCO World Heritage site. Kew Gardens are working with various partners globally, on an initiative to rescue plants which are endangered or are already extinct in the wild. This crucial work is at the heart of the wonderful Temperate House – the world’s largest Victorian glasshouse which Kew has filled with threatened plant life from all corners of the globe. The exotic mix of plant species here offers an unrivalled experience for garden enthusiasts, where we can appreciate the work being done to address such issues as climate change and bio diversity threats.

The gardens at Kew are largely flat with tarmac paths which means that there is much which is easily accessible for visitors of all mobility needs. Kew Gardens offers free entry for essential carers, support workers, next of kin accompanying disabled visitors, blind and partially-sighted visitors. You can visit the Kew Gardens website here.

Flowerbed of orange and purple flowers

How Can I Find Beautiful and Accessible Gardens to Visit Near Me?

Whilst Kew may be amongst the most famous of garden venues, an abundance of lesser known gems are distributed throughout the UK. With over 3000 stately homes and manor houses which open their doors to the public, we have no shortage of gardens at such venues to enjoy. In fact, there has been significant growth in the number of visitors to these types of places in recent years, which has meant much investment in these areas to support the demand.

Visit England is a fantastic website resource where you can search by location for venues near you. Visit their website here to explore castles and historic properties to visit.

Brockhole House and Garden at Lake Windermere 

An Arts & Crafts Haven at Brockhole Garden

Brockhole Garden, at Brockhole House on the bank of Lake Windermere, Cumbria, is a perfect example of a historic house destination which has something for all of the family, too. With a fantastic adventure playground and a variety of activities from archery to go karts, younger visitors will be kept as enthralled as those of us who are there to take a leisurely stroll through the beautiful greenery of the gardens.

Brockhole Garden is a beautiful example of the early work of one of the most renowned garden designers of the Arts & Crafts era, Thomas Mawson. Mawson created many Cumbrian gardens and was prolific throughout his career. With a kitchen garden on site, Brockhole is a garden which has plenty to offer throughout all seasons.

At Windermere Nursery, Mawson diligently learned of which plants would thrive in the lakeside location. He designed the garden with a series of terraces facing south and west, gently sloping down to Lake Windermere. His planting style intentionally evolves from formal to informal, with flowerbeds by the house, meadow areas, and then, as we get closer to the shoreline of the lake, a shady woodland. Mawson’s passion for this site can still be felt in the garden which he lovingly created. You can visit the website for Brockhole On Windermere here.

Mixture of flowers in wooden planter

How Can I Most Enjoy my Visit to Historic Venues?

Understanding a little about the designers of these gardens and the various factors which informed their landscaping decisions can, of course, be fascinating. Naturally, venues go to great lengths to ensure that they have knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff who are able to answer all of your questions about the origins of their gardens, the original designers, the contemporary upkeep etc. Chatting to friendly staff often gives some of the most rewarding snippets of information to take away from your visit.

Path with heavily stocked flowerbeds

What About Accessibility in British Gardens?

British historic gardens are often accessible areas, but preparation can be key to enjoying any visit, especially if your mobility is a consideration. Many of the venues have helpful information available such as accessibility maps and will always be happy to provide specific information on accessibility at the site.

Fortunately, there are such a vast array of products to help us in this area. At Ability Superstore we pride ourselves on our wide range of products and helpful staff – we understand how important it is to have good customer care who will listen and provide us with sound advice. Our huge collection of walking aids are ideal for anyone with balance or mobility issues and offer extra support in the form of walking sticks, canes and crutches, walking frames, four wheel rollators, tri-walkers, wheelchairs and shopping trolleys. To explore our range and find the product for you, visit our Walking Aids pages on our website here.

Lady pruning flowers enjoying gardening

Bringing Home Inspirations For Your Garden

Our British historic houses are a part of what makes our country special and there is much to enjoy when exploring these sites. On your return from your visit, you may well be filled with new ideas for your own outdoor space. Whilst it is a joy, gardening also requires work. Digging and planting can be especially hard on the hands, wrists and joints as can kneeling for long periods.

Take a look at our range of products developed to help you enjoy the garden. Our cleverly designed Easi-Grip trowel and fork have ergonomically angled handles to prevent aches and strains whilst gardening. We also offer a range of products which will ensure that you are kept more comfortable whilst kneeling. Visit our Gardening Aids section on our website here.

Ability Superstore is proud to offer one of the largest selections of mobility aids, daily living aids and disability products in the UK. Established in 2010, we soon became one of the leading websites for both products and advice. Now, with our first retail store, we are happy to be serving our customers face to face, too.

At Ability Superstore, we provide a vast array of items, ranging from basic jar openers to high-end mobility scooters. Our friendly and well-informed staff and Occupational Therapists are always available to address your queries and assist you in finding the ideal gardening or daily living aid to make your day-to-day life more straightforward. Check out our website now to find out more.

Get In Touch

You can get in touch with our customer service team for guidance or additional information by calling us free on 0800 255 0498, or email us at, or filling out our Contact Us form on our website. You can also find us on Instagram and Facebook.