Ancient Yew Tree

Tree Avenue

Victorian Dipping Pool


The Walled Garden

Lesley Lewis, owner of The George’s for 22 years, purchased the three acre Walled Garden on the Penty Parc Estate, Walton East in 2007. The garden was is a state of disrepair, even dereliction, at this time. Restoring the walls and returning the garden to productivity will be a lifetime’s work, but Lesley and The George’s team have shown tremendous energy and enthusiasm in starting this task.

The restoration project is a natural adjunct to The George’s trading ethos. The garden will be restored sympathetically with wildlife and the natural environment major considerations. The productive areas are organic and supply local produce with few road miles to The George’s kitchens. This is a labour of love and a confirmation of all that The George’s team values in ethical and sensitive trading practices.

The story so far:
• Large areas of the walls have been repaired by a local stonemason – there remains a tiny bit of touching up to do when the swallows quit their nests!

• The ruins of the gardener’s cottage by the East wall have been restored as a small energy efficient dwelling for Lesley herself.

• Five beehives and a bee keepers’ shed have been added and the first garden honey is now on sale. Wild flower banks and careful planting provide plentiful food sources for our busy bees.

• The greenhouse is fully operational and has contributed tomatoes, cucumbers and assorted leaves to the kitchens.

• The strawberry beds are in their second year of production – sadly no jam but several very fat squirrels!

• Our vegetable beds are currently producing an organic supply for the kitchens – we have much to learn but are pleased with our first season.

• An orchard is established with assorted berry crops this year and a promise of larger fruits in the future. We have completed the first steps to espalier our cherries and other fruits against the South wall: we were a bit hesitant but the trees look like the book advised so fingers crossed for the future.

Our raised beds are now established so we hope to produce our own asparagus in future years.

Our bees feed enthusiastically on our wild flower and lavender beds and banks.

Did we do all that? Looking back, we realise just how much has happened in the last five years. The Victorian dipping pool may have to wait for another year but one day…

The heavy preparation work that underlies all this is no longer evident, as the garden settles back into quiet productive life. Much of the garden remains natural parkland, husbanded to promote wildlife and habitat bio-diversity: a pleasant place to rest from our gardening efforts and reflect upon our relationship with the land and our place in it.