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Barnsdale Gardens Access Statement

Introduction

The Barnsdale Garden was originally created by Geoff Hamilton for the BBC2 series Gardeners’ World, where Geoff would create small, realistic and achievable gardens to give viewers gardening advice, confidence and encouragement of what to do in their own garden. The main television garden was never opened to the public, but since Geoff’s death in 1996 the garden passed to his son Nick and he opened the gardens to the on 19th April 1997. The garden continues to develop in order to give as much help, enjoyment and inspiration to those visiting and now has 39 individual gardens and features. The whole site is on a flat level area with 90% accessible by wheelchair users. There is no reduction in enjoyment for visitors with impaired hearing.

Pre-Arrival

  • We can be contacted by: telephone on 01572 813200, fax 01572 813346 or email:
  • The Rutland Flyer 2 bus from Oakham to Melton Mowbray stops directly outside our entrance as a request stop. It passes both ways every 2 hours, with a timetable being viewable on our web site.
  • It is a 23 metre (25 yard) walk from the dropping off point to the garden entrance.
  • Our nearest town is Oakham which is 3 miles away.
  • We have 2 wheelchairs and a mobility scooter that are free for visitors requiring them. One can be pre-booked, prior to visiting, to guarantee one will be available.

Arrival & Car Parking Facilities

  • We have 5 accessible car parking spaces available. These are situated right outside the entrances to the gardens, tea room, gift shop and nursery. If required, these can be pre-booked prior to visiting.
  • The accessible parking spaces are situated on a tarmac area with tarmac between the spaces, all the entrances and the toilets.
  • The ground between the spaces, all the entrances and the toilets are flat and even with no steps.
  • There is a small ramp into the tea room/garden entrance and a step into both the ladies and gentleman’s toilets, although the entry into the accessible toilet is completely flat with no ramp or step.
  • There is rear access to all vehicles parked in the accessible areas.
  • If someone needs assistance from their vehicle to any part of the site this can be pre-arranged before visiting, although any member of staff would be pleased to help if asked on the day.
  • There is a hand rail if waiting to enter the tea room/garden entrance.
  • We have 2 special dog spaces, in the shade, for visitors who have to bring their dogs with them. These can be pre-booked prior to arrival, with a dog bowl provided, as is easy access to mains water.
  • There is movement operated lighting around all entrances.
  • All car parking is free.

Main Entrance, Reception & Ticketing Area.

  • There is one entrance which takes you into the tea room, with the gardens being accessible from there. There is also only one entrance into the gift shop, which also takes you through to the nursery.
  • The entrance door into the tea room is a push door on a returner. The entry door to the gift shop is a pull door on a returner. Exit doors into the gardens and nursery are the same as the entry doors. Assistance with both of these doors is readily available as both areas are permanently staffed.
  • All flooring in the tea room and gift shop is level, with all surfaces being 90 centimetres (36 inches) high
  • The information provided at the garden entrance is clear and concise. All products in the tea room and gift shop are priced. The plants for sale all have a clear board listing the plant's name, description, dimensions and price.

Public Areas - Hall, Stairs, Landing, Corridors etc

  • All buildings are single storey with no stairs or lifts to negotiate.
  • The entry into the tea room is carpeted but the rest is a wooden floor. The flooring in the gift shop is a solid floor. The nursery walkways are made from compacted granite chippings and are easy to walk on and push wheelchairs. The walkways in the gardens are predominantly grass, although there are also a number of other pathway materials used, such as bark, gravel, slabs, decking, bricks and compacted granite chippings.
  • All signs are clear and easy to read.
  • There are no toilet facilities in the gardens, tea room, nursery or gift shop, but the accessible toilet is situated within 9 metres (10 yards) from the entrances to any of these.

Public Areas - Sitting room, lounges, lobbies etc

  • The tea room consists of tables and chairs. The flooring is made from wooden floorboards.
  • The outside eating areas are situated directly outside the Tea Room and consist of metal Bistro tables and chairs placed on compacted granite chippings and surrounded by plants and trees.

Public WCs

  • The accessible toilet is situated 9 metres (10 yards) from the entrances to the gardens/tea room, gift shop and nursery.
  • The accessible toilet is unisex.
  • The accessible toilet is fitted with handrails and also has a removable booster seat. 
  • We also have separate ladies and gentleman’s toilets another 14 metres (15 yards) away. Both of these toilets have a small step at the entry.
  • All ground around the toilets and to all facilities from the toilets is flat, even and tarmac ground. ·         The accessible toilet also houses baby changing facilities.
  • As the accessible toilet is positioned out of the gardens it can be used without having to pay the garden entry fee.

Shop

  • The shop is accessible from the outside tarmac area and there are no ramps or steps into or out of the shop.
  • Assistance with the doors is always available.
  • The counter is split level - half is 90 centimetres (36 inches) high, whilst the other half is 60 centimetres (24 inches) high.
  • All items are individually priced.
  • The lighting is provided by halogen spotlights, although we are in the process of changing these to provide a brighter environment.

Outdoor Facilities

  • We have 39 individual gardens all laid out within a garden setting. These have been built with average-sized gardens in mind to give as much realism and therefore practical ideas as possible.
  • The gardens are accessed through the tea room entrance.
  • There is a charge to enter the gardens.
  • The walkways in the gardens are predominantly grass, although there are also a number of other pathway materials used, such as bark, gravel, slabs, decking, bricks and compacted granite chippings.
  • The information boards on each garden are clear and easy to read.

Attractions (Displays, exhibits, rides etc.)

  • We are open every day, except 24th and 25th December, with times varying depending on the season - March, April, May, September and October 9am to 5pm; June, July and August 9am to 7pm and November to February 10am to 4pm.
  • Guided tours are available for groups at an added cost to garden entry. These need to be pre-booked prior to arrival.
  • There is a cost to enter the gardens, but entry to the tea room, gift shop and nursery are free.
  • There are 2 wheelchairs and a mobility scooter that can be used free of charge. These should be pre-booked prior to arrival.
  • The walkways in the gardens are predominantly grass, although there are also a number of other pathway materials used, such as bark, gravel, slabs, decking, bricks and compacted granite chippings.
  • We have installed a viewing platform for the Town Paradise Garden, as it is not possible to get a wheelchair into this garden safely. The whole garden can be viewed easily from this platform.
  • There are 3 gardens where visitor access is restricted, with these gardens being viewed from the outside.
  • Although we do not allow dogs into the gardens we do allow assistance dogs; there are no problems in taking these dogs into the gardens.
  • There are no toilets within the gardens but every visitor is issued with a daily dated sticker on arrival which allows them to come and go in and out of the gardens as they please making access to the toilet facilities very easy.

Grounds and Gardens

  • We have 39 individual gardens all laid out within a garden setting. These have been built with average-sized gardens in mind to give as much realism and therefore practical ideas as possible.
  • The gardens are accessed through the Gardens entrance to the side of the Tea Room.
  • There is a charge to enter the gardens.
  • The walkways in the gardens are predominantly grass, although there are also a number of other pathway materials used, such as bark, gravel, slabs, decking, bricks and compacted granite chippings.
  • The information boards on each garden are clear and easy to read.
  • There are plenty of seats to be used for resting or sitting and enjoying, in gardens as well as between gardens.
  • There are a couple of gardens where a step needs to be negotiated.
  • We have tactile, as well as scented plants dotted all over the gardens, although the Herb Garden is ideal for those looking for a sensory area. We do not encourage visitors to touch plants in other areas as there are some that may cause skin irritation. Visitors with impaired vision will can still benefit from the fragrances emitted naturally by plants without having to touch.

Additional Information

  • Our evacuation procedures are simple and easy to follow with 2 escape routes from the gift shop and 4 escape routes from the tea room. All members of the public are requested to assemble by the Fire Assembly Point in the car park area. All staff are aware and trained in the importance of moving visitors calmly and safely out to this area in the event of fire.
  • We have 9 members of staff trained to the Welcome Host standard, who are therefore aware of disability and how to accommodate visitors with disabilities.
  • The tea room, gift shop and all toilets are designated no smoking areas.
  • We do not allow dogs into the gardens, with the exception of Assistance Dogs. For those who have to bring their dogs we provide 2 dog parking spaces, in the shade, that can be reserved prior to arrival. There is a dog bowl provided and easy access to mains water.
  • We have fridges that can be used if medication needs to be stored whilst visiting.
  • All our staff are only too willing to help any visitor if asked. Help can also be pre-arranged if required on arrival.
  • We have 6 members of staff trained as Appointed First Aiders. Emergency calls are usually made from the landline, although if not operational all Appointed First Aiders have mobile telephones. The caller will direct any emergency service to the site and, if not required elsewhere, once the call has been made they will wait at the entrance for the emergency services to arrive so that they can lead them to the emergency. If the first aider is required elsewhere they will nominate a member of staff to carry out this task.

Address

Barnsdale Gardens
The Avenue
Exton
Oakham
Rutland
LE15 8AH
Telephone: 01572 813200
Fax: 01572 813346
Email:
Website: www.barnsdalegardens.co.uk
Grid reference: OS grid reference - SK912108

Hours of operation

The Gardens, Nursery and Tea Room are open daily, except 24th and 25th December, during the following times:

March, April, May, September and October 9am to 5pm
June, July and August 9am to 7pm
November to February 10am to 4pm

Please note: Last entry into the Gardens is 1 hour prior to closing and the Tea Room stops serving ½ hour before closing.

Local public transport numbers:  Rutland Flyer 2 operated by Centrebus - telephone 0844 351 1120 

Train timetable to Oakham - telephone National Rail enquiries on 08457 48 49 50

National Express coach to Stamford - telephone 08717 818181

Local accessible taxi numbers:
Berridge Taxis - 01572 756088
Fox Taxis - 01572 720200
Kevin's Taxis of Oakham - 01572 720136
Roger's Taxis - 07597 691581

Future Plans

  • The Garden for the Less Mobile is aimed at people with limited mobility. It will not consist purely of raised beds but instead be a mix between raised and ground level beds, with adapted tools and equipment playing a pivotal role. The garden will be built between the allotment and the orchard.

Contact Telephone and Email Address

We welcome your feedback to help us continually improve. If you have any comments please telephone us 01572 813200 or email:

Barnsdale Gardens, The Avenue, Exton, Oakham, Rutland LE15 8AH. | Tel: 01572 813 200 | Email: