Shropshire Star

Tom’s open garden to fundraise for Macmillan Cancer Support in Shropshire

Award-winning Shropshire horticulturist Tom Pountney is opening his picturesque country garden to visitors to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support for the second year running.

Tom Pountney

Tom, who owns Offcot in Kynaston, near Kinnerley, Oswestry, is no stranger to supporting charity having previously welcomed visitors to his half-acre garden to raise money for the National Garden Scheme.

This time, he opens his gates for Macmillan Cancer Support’s Shrewsbury Fundraising Group on Sunday, July 28 from 10am to 5pm. Admission is £7 at the gate and all funds raised will be spent provide Macmillan Cancer Support in Shropshire.

Homemade cakes, refreshments and a plants stall will be available for visitors. Sadly, the garden’s narrow paths are unsuitable for wheelchairs, frames and buggies and no dogs are allowed.

“Volunteers at Shrewsbury Macmillan Fundraising Group are delighted that Tom is opening his beautiful country garden, nestled deep in the peaceful Shropshire countryside, for us again this year,” said Gill Eleftheriou, spokeswoman for the group. “As the Open Garden date is several weeks earlier than last year, different perennials will be at their peak. Tom tweaks his annual planting schemes every summer and has undertaken some major alterations over the winter months.

“These include an amazing new sunken seating area surrounded by a hand-built wall of Welsh slate. We can't wait to visit again and to see the changes! It’s a date not to miss for garden lovers and Macmillan supporters.”

The garden has been a labour of love since Tom moved to Offcot nine years ago. Having studied horticulture at Pershore College, he is now general manager of Love Plants, the specialist plants centre at Salop Leisure’s headquarters at Emstrey, Shrewsbury.

Last year, he created the winning show garden for Salop Leisure and Love Plants at Shrewsbury Flower Show.

“The garden was just a field and the grass was over two feet long when I moved there,” explained Tom. “It’s now eight years old, as I spent the first year just clearing it out.

"I held an open garden for the first time four years ago and it’s nice to be able to share it with visitors and raise money for charity at the same time.”

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