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03 March 2015

Countryfile Magazine Garden of the Year 2014/15

It’s official. Trentham Gardens is the UK’s “Garden of the Year”.

Described as the “garden make-over of the decade” by The Daily Telegraph last year, Staffordshire’s Trentham Gardens has just been named the UK’s “Garden of the Year” in the annual BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards.

The award comes at the same time The Trentham Estate has announced record visitor figures to its famous Gardens for 2014.

Now firmly established as one of the UK’s most visited gardens - after re-opening to the public 10 years ago following an award-winning restoration project by St. Modwen, the UK’s leading regeneration specialist - Trentham Gardens was in a short-list of five gardens to win the magazine’s prestigious awards.

This is the fourth year for the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards - which relies on a public vote to determine winners in 12 separate categories.

The shortlist for the Garden of the Year award had been compiled by the BBC Gardener’s World Magazine team; and Trentham Gardens - part of The Trentham Estate on the edge of Stoke-on-Trent - found itself lined-up alongside some of the most famous gardens in the UK, including the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh, Alnwick Garden in Northumbria, Kew Gardens in Surrey, and The Lost Gardens of Heligan in Cornwall.

One of the most popular visitor attractions in the heart of England, The Trentham Estate was quick to urge everyone who has ever enjoyed a visit there to either pick up a pen, or log-on to the website, to show their appreciation of what has been achieved here since the gardens were re-opened to the public in 2004.

“We have so many people to thank for this,” says Mike Herbert, Director of The Trentham Estate.  “I think we all feel a little humbled by the support we received from all parts of the country, but especially locally.  Trentham is one of those places that welcomes you, and makes you feel like it’s your own.

“It has only just started to sink in: we’ve realised our dream of national recognition in such a short time.  Our gardening team deserve special praise, obviously, but I think this award really needs to be dedicated to everyone who is now a part of The Trentham Estate - our visitors, and to the people of Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire who have taken our attraction so much to heart.”

Countryfile magazine editor Fergus Collins, meanwhile, commented: “This is our way of saying thank you to the people and places that make the countryside so special. The awards clearly roused great passion and amassed thousands of votes, a testament to the strong contenders in each category. It was a closely fought competition generating great interest.

“Trentham can be justly proud of their title - they have been endorsed as outstanding examples in their field by our readership. It was a very popular category, and Trentham gained around 30% of the votes that were cast. It’s a fantastic achievement, and refreshing to see a relatively ‘new kid on the block’ getting a look-in."”

Countryfile magazine was able to reveal that Trentham Gardens received 3,272 votes out of a total of 11,173 votes in the “Garden of the Year” category, beating last year’s winner The Lost Gardens of Heligan into second place.

Annual ticket holders, however, can now visit the gardens in Stoke-on-Trent safe in the knowledge that they can enjoy Countryfile Magazine’s “Garden of the Year” all year round!

For further details, visit

Countryfile Award 350


For all media information, photo-opportunities and images, please contact:

Amanda Dawson        Tel: 01782 657341      E-mail:

Notes to editors:


Garden of the Year: Trentham Gardens
Second place: The Lost Gardens of Heligan
Third place: Alnwick Garden

Heritage Site of the Year: Severn Valley Railway
Second place: Imperial War Museum, Duxford
Third place: Portmeirion

Holiday Destination of the Year: The Lake District
Second place: Outer Hebrides
Third place: Yorkshire

Wildlife Success Story of the Year: Red Squirrel
Second place: White-tailed eagle
Third place: Otter

Country Book of the Year: The Walker’s Guide to Outdoor Clues and Signs by Tristan Gooley
Second place: H Is For Hawk by Helen Macdonald
Third place: The Seasons by Nick Groom

National Park of the Year: The Lake District
Second place: Loch Lomond and the Trossachs
Third Place: Peak District

Nature Reserve of the Year: Bass Rock
Second place: RSPB Minsmere
Third place: WWT London Wetland Centre

Landmark of the Year: The Kelpies
Second place: Llanddwyn Island Lighthouse
Third place: Shakespeare Birthplace Trust

Beach of the Year: Whitesands Bay, Pembrokeshire
Second place: Sennen Cove, Cornwall
Third place: Scarborough, North Yorkshire

Outdoor Brand of the Year: Berghaus
Second place: Osprey
Third place: Paramo

Reader photo of the Year: Lancashire Rainbow by Nick Jackson
Second place: Catching a Few Rays by Eve Russell
Third place: Small Swallow by Debbie Deboo

Rural Pub of the Year: the Steam Packet Inn, Isle of Whithorn, Dumfries and Galloway
Second place: The Salutation Inn, Ham, Gloucestershire
Third place: The Harewood Arms, Broadbottom, Cheshire

The Trentham Estate, on the edge of Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, offers one of the UK’s most diverse days out with a range of leisure activities for all ages.

It is one of the country’s top leisure destinations, attracting more than 3.2m visitors per year and was Highly Commended by VisitEngland in the Large Visitor Attraction category in their Awards for Excellence 2014. The fabulous restored Trentham Gardens at the heart of the Estate welcomed almost 480,000 paying visitors in 2014 - making them one of the most visited gardens in the UK.

Owned and managed by St. Modwen Properties PLC, the UK’s leading regeneration specialist, the 725-acre Estate, which was previously owned for over 400 years by the Dukes of Sutherland, has undergone a massive regeneration programme since 2003.

The Estate boasts:

The famous Trentham Gardens, including the very important Italianate Gardens designed by Charles Barry in the 1830s that have been lovingly restored using top landscape designers. The gardens feature the UK’s first ‘barefoot’ walk, a great children’s adventure play area and maze and a beautiful walk around the mile long lake, originally laid out by Lancelot “Capability” Brown in the 18th Century.

The Trentham Garden Centre and Shopping Village, an eclectic mix of shops and eateries with a 119 bedroom Premier Inn Hotel.

Trentham Monkey Forest - a unique opportunity to walk amongst 140 free roaming Barbary macaques, in a natural woodland environment for this endangered species.

Aerial Extreme, an exhilarating treetop high rope adventure course.

Extensive beautiful Woodlands.

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