Twas two nights before Christmas,
And all through the grounds,
Lots of creatures stirring,
Due to the loud stormy sounds.
It will have escaped nobody’s attention that the UK has been battered by some pretty strong storms recently, and down here in West Kent it was no exception. I got to work on Christmas Eve to find the Chartwell gardens had taken a pretty serious pounding, some of which I’ll let you know about in this blog. Some of our staff couldn’t even get into work that morning due to some heavy local flooding so Tony, our Premises Assistant, and I set off with our saws and loppers to first clear all of the fallen branches from the surrounding roads. Once that was done it was time to have a proper look around the gardens to find out the full extent of the damage. I’ll let the pictures do the talking…
Once we had cleared any of the fallen branches from the paths and roped off any trees that we thought it was potentially unsafe to walk beneath, we also managed to get a local tree management company that we use regularly called Down To Earth to come out on Christmas Eve and deal with the precarious Lime limb that you can see above. Once that was all done, the garden was at least ready to receive visitors again. The work of clearing the fallen Bay Tree that was blocking the paths at the top of the Winter Border has also now been cleared out of the immediate way. You will still see plenty of fallen trees and branches around the garden however until we can properly clear everything away but they are not unsafe for our visitors at all. The problem we have at them moment though is the ground is too sodden to drive our tractors over and until that changes many of the limbs are much too large and heavy to remove by hand. Plenty of our visitors are finding it quite interesting to see what the storm managed to do to our gardens and also the ways in which we are responding to the damage. Whether you come along soon to have a look for yourself, or if you visit in a few weeks once all of the debris has been cleared again, we look forward to seeing you here again soon…