This year’s Secret Gardens was a bumper year for all involved – the organisers (Kirsty and Lisa), the volunteers, the sponsors, local businesses, the entertainers, Artists, Friends of the Arno (plant stall) and the street food stalls. Prenton Prep once again transformed their grounds into a garden party – the Hub. 4,100 people bought tickets and many others just joined in the general festivities. And none of this would matter without our wonderful owners who prepared and opened up their beautiful gardens. After a two-year hiatus, Secret Gardens came back with a bang to break all records.
Great weather and pent-up demand resulted in ticket sales of about £36,500. The raffle and the refreshments at Prenton Prep, organised by the Toosey family, brought in over £5,000. Together with rental for the stalls and other donations the event brought in about £45,000.
Expenses came to about £6,000, including the road closure (£1,700) toilets, buses, St John’s (£1,500). This left about £39,000 for distribution between the four charities – Stick and Step, the Woodcraft Folk, the Shaftesbury Youth Club and, of course, the Oxton Society. After 2 year’s reduced income from the Gardens, this means that we now have the funds to continue our activities (Xmas Lights, Hanging Baskets, Blue Plaques, etc) and to consider how we can increase our work on conservation within Oxton.