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Skelmanthorpe gardener Julie Peckham opening up her garden for 10th year

Hard work behind charity success of garden

They moved into their home in 1999 and inherited a huge expanse of lawn.

But now, after thousands of hours of hard work in all weathers, Julie and Tony Peckham are again to open their garden for charity.

It’s a landmark year for the Skelmanthorpe couple as they are marking 10 years of raising cash for charity as part of the National Gardens Scheme.

The couple’s stunning garden in Manorstead, Skelmanthorpe, will open on Sunday, April 17, and again on Sunday, May 15.

On both days the garden will be open between 1pm and 4pm and Julie will be serving tea and cakes, and selling plants, to raise more cash.

Over the years she has raised more than £7,900 for the Garden Scheme which has helped charities including Macmillan Cancer Support and Marie Curie.

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Julie said: “We moved into the house in 1999 and the garden wasn’t up to much. There was a huge expanse of lawn with some beds around it.

“I have always enjoyed gardening and I find it very therapeutic; if I’m feeling low I know I can get outside and feel so much better.

“Our garden isn’t large but we do try to create a lot of interest in there and I know from what our visitors have said they they enjoy exploring it.

“All the paths through it were grass but we have now got them all paved because it’s far better when the weather is wet. I hope that people can see most things in the garden from the paths.

“The biggest headache we faced was time. Tony was working as a teacher when we moved here and we could only crack on with the hard landscaping work during the school holidays.

“Now I garden all year round as if you plan to open it up in the Spring, you need to be out through the winter. You can’t be a fair weather gardener if you want things to look good in Spring, so I wrap up warm and get out there even though it can be very cold and wet”.

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One of the couple’s biggest projects was to install an ornate summerhouse. They bought it in a sale but totally re-designed it, with tongue and groove cladding and red shingles replacing the flat felt roof.

“It was a huge job and we had to bring in scaffolding.

“The neighbours looked a bit concerned and we joked we were adding a second storey to it,” said Julie.



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