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Open Gardens Feedback


On Saturday, 26th June, 2021, we held an “Open Gardens” event in the village.  We usually hold this every second year. An "Open Gardens" WebSite has an entry for our village here

Our booklet may be downloaded as a .pdf.

This was a "Community" effort, with over 50 people involved, for whom it was quite hard work, but all enjoyed the challenge! And our visitors were all "nice people" that we were delighted to welcome to our village.  Some had travelled quite far - Salisbury, Christchurch, Bournemouth, Poole, Weymouth, Bridport, Sherborne, Gillingham, Shaftesbury were all mentioned.

We had 279 visitors (187 last time), and raised nearly £2,000 for our Church - see here for more..

We have had some lovely comments about the day :- 


From: Donald 

Hi - just to say we thoroughly enjoyed the gardens of Okeford Fitzpaine yesterday, chatting to the owners and the opportunity of exploring your lovely village. Very impressed by the hard work and cheerfulness of the ladies serving refreshments in the village hall too!


From: Linda

Thought the church looked lovely, and we enjoyed the gardens, thought 74 The Cross was absolutely delightful, and didn’t realise Rose Hill Farmhouse had such a huge garden, don’t know how they keep it so tidy. Hope you are not too worn out by all the organising, and that the event raised plenty of money, there seemed to be a lot of people going round.


From: Vicki

Thank you, Okeford Fitzpaine!

A post in the 'Blandford Forum public forum' on FaceBook led me and my Mum from Blandford to your village today, and we thoroughly enjoyed wandering around the beautiful and diverse gardens and chatting to the owners and other visitors.

I may be a little giddy due to all this interaction following the recent scarcity of such, but it was just such a pleasant experience! 

We were made so welcome by the owners, the volunteers at the church, and the team at the village hall cafe - lovely lunch, too! - all in a very Covid-secure way. I hope the event will have raised lots for your beautiful church.

If, once you've all recovered from the planning, preparation and hard work, someone timidly mentions doing it all again in the future, we'll be back!


From: Lydia (Rector)

I want to thank you for your incredible efforts of organisation and energy for yesterday's event. The numbers attending are a testimony.

More than anything it was about bringing a community together, bringing people together and putting the Church back at the heart of things. It was a truly splendid day (and the money raised was pretty fab too!!)

Please take time to recover.


From: Gail

Many congratulations for what sounded like a spectacular success!  I am sorry I was not able to be here to enjoy the day.  It sounds like you had some challenges on the day to overcome, but clearly everyone had their team head on and just got on with it. 

Well done!


From: Mike (whose garden was open)

We're so pleased that so many came to enjoy the village, and the weather and the arrangements made a good many very happy people. I certainly haven't had so much fun for a long time.


From: Sue (whose garden was open)

Congratulations on a truly  fabulous achievement  !

It was a great day and such a lot of fun.

A lot of people don't  realise the amount of work that goes into the preparation of these events, not to mention the fantastic group effort on the day. Everyone worked really well together, and I can't think of anything that could have been improved upon.


From: Sue (a helper)

We had many very appreciative comments – a lot mentioned how blown away they were by the display in the church and the lovely spaciousness of the church and we have had e-mails from visitors saying how much they enjoyed their day here in our lovely village.   All day long people were expressing appreciation.   


From: Fee (a helper)

It was great fun being part of the day and the run up.  We were blessed with a fantastic day, and people were so pleased to be able to come out at last, and be outside too.

Yes, the church does look fantastic.

It really is a fantastic total and everyone worked so hard to achieve such a successful day.

Well done to all involved.


From: Anita (a helper)

Well done for such a fabulous event.  I think everyone who took part in arranging, opened their gardens or visited enjoyed the day - it was lovely.


From: Peter (a helper)

Excellent and much enjoyed.  Many had travelled a good distance.

Very satisfying.




We would very pleased to have your comments & feedback, and to help us next time, what could we have done better !  Also, we would like to know where you came from that day, and how you first learned of this event.  

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