Dearest Kids & Kittens,


"When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things." – Oh… Really?


I'm not sure I believe in that.


Why are we encouraged so much to grow up and leave, what adults call, the best days of our lives? Not that we needed that much encouragement; we spent our time hurtling towards the 'next stage', determined to be bigger, more grown up, older, more mature and tall enough to take the ride. And what have we found? Certainly not all of the freedoms we thought we would.


So now our childhood has become romanticised by memorabilia and tat (hands up who owns a Thundercats t-shirt or a Bagpuss plushie?) and it seems present childhoods are now being rated, reposted and liked (or unliked) as all the best 'toys' are experienced, virtually through screens… As well as its innate qualities being confounded; childlike wonder is something we yearn for yet rarely see. Yet we are all ashamed when accused of childlike behaviour.


Join us this summer as we’ve decided it's time to get those Childish Things out of the box again and embrace them as this year’s theme. Escape the world that wants us to grow-up (and behave); and explore what we all left behind.


It was a time when the right side of your brain was in control and magic seemed possible. The stories were wild, the adventures epic and the most important question was "what's for tea?" (and we all knew how to find out the answer to that). Living viscerally and getting involved (in everything) was second nature in those feral/free/savage and uncharted times.


So in July we will create for you a 100-acre toy box of a party, complete with jelly, ice cream and sprinkles, so you can release and realise your inner child.


Remember youth is wasted on the young; so here’s your second shot at it.


In the words of Stephen Sondeim; 'Send in the clowns...'


Big Love,


The Head Gardener x