New Flowering of a Secret Garden
The Radnorshire Enterprise For Nature, Education And Wellbeing - RENEW
RENEW is a constituted not-for-profit association formed with the objective of advancing the understanding and practice of sustainable living, healthy eating, environmental awareness and personal development.
The association is based in a one and a half acre Victorian walled garden near Newbridge-on-Wye, Powys. We are currently engaged in restoring and developing the garden as a resource and education centre for adults and children. We run courses and workshops in the garden and in the surrounding landscape on organic horticulture, garden design, sustainable living, forest schools, wild habitats, edible wild plants & environmental studies. Day visits and camping in the garden can also be arranged for groups and organisations who would like to explore the area.
The walled garden was built between 1870 and 1880 and is part of the Doldowlod estate once owned by James Watt, one of the leading lights in the development of the steam engine during the industrial revolution. The estate is set in the beautiful countryside of the Wye valley and is rich in wildlife and ancient trees, the river itself being an SSSI. This is also good walking country of open hills and moor land.
The walled garden had been disused for nearly thirty years until RENEW took it over at the beginning of 2005. Much work has now
been done in reclaiming the garden and it is now a productive place once again, growing fruit and vegetables for visitors and local people. One of the first discoveries uncovered during the renovation was 27 lead labels marking the original fruit tree planting. These labels are still in situ in their existing places on the garden walls. The trees no longer exist, but as a record of what was grown there, the labels are of great historic significance.
Courses and workshops in the garden go on throughout spring, summer and autumn and a full programme of these is available on request.
RENEW's plans for the future include the installation of Yurts for accommodation, solar powered showers and composting toilets as infrastructure. Hydro electric generation is also planned to supply power to the site. Restoration of the garden includes renovation of the two original greenhouses and coldframes. The garden is open for hire by other organisations or groups. New members are always welcome.
If you would like further information on RENEW and its activities contact
David Burridge (chair of RENEW)
Tel: 01597 860186