RHS Garden Wisley

RHS Garden Wisley: The historic home of the RHS

The historic home of the RHS, RHS Garden Wisley was founded more than 100 years ago and features a huge range of cultivated plants of national significance as well as a fascinating blend of historical and modern and cultivated planting. Groups love it for its unrivalled selection of plants and fabulous displays which continually change as the seasons progress.

Spring sees huge collections of magnolias and rhododendrons bring colour to the woodland gardens and bulbs carpeting the lawns and borders. Summer highlights include the extensive rose garden, the vast Mixed Borders and the recently created Exotic Garden. Enjoy acres of autumn colour from Wisley’s extensive tree collections, while the orchard features hundreds of apple varieties. In winter, the Winter Walk route is planted with shrubs and trees for winter display, including many scented plants and stems and leaf colour.

A calendar of special events includes The Spring Plant Fair (20-22 March), The RHS Garden Wisley Flower Show (8-13 September), A Taste of Autumn (14-18 October) and Glow Illuminations during December.

The new Welcome Centre opened in 2019, with a fabulous 100-seater restaurant, café, huge shop and plant centre and new entrance. In 2020, look out for the new National Centre of Horticultural Science and Learning, opening up the RHS’s hugely significant scientific work to visitors.

Three month Lego event coming to RHS Garden Wisley in 2019 – the kids are going to love it!

If you’re looking for ways to escape the winter blues after Christmas, why not take your family on a journey inside the Glasshouse at RHS Garden Wisley?

From January 26 to March 3 2019, one of Surrey’s much-loved attractions will play host to The Great Brick Safari.

Visitors will be able to to search for more than 40 Lego brick sculptures, as well as discovering all of the natural beauties of the garden and of course warming up with a hot chocolate and a slice of homemade cake in the on-site café afterwards.

The life-size Lego brick creations can be found nestled among the lush foliage in both the temperate and tropical zones of the cathedral-like glasshouse.

Sculptures include animals such as an elephant, lions, meerkats, turtles and a gorilla.

Great family things to do around Surrey

Beautiful Lego brick plants created especially for RHS Garden Wisley include a Venus Fly Trap, Golden Barrel Cactus, Bird of Paradise and Water Lilies.

As each magnificent sculpture is discovered, visitors can learn all about the animal and plants, such as the natural habitats they are found in and conservation efforts taking place around the world.

During half term, February 16 – 24, 2019, there will be a Lego brick making workshop in the Glasshouse Gallery, where boys and girls can purchase their chosen mini animal to take home.

As a fun souvenir, visitors can also have their photo taken sitting in the Lego brick Jeep.

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Opening times:

The Glasshouse will be open from 10am-4.30pm daily during the event.

Standard opening times:

RHS Garden Wisley is open every day except Christmas Day.

Mon-Fri from 10am – 4.30pm until March 17, 2019 (10am-6pm from March 18, 2019 to October 20, 2019).

Sat and Sun (including Bank Holidays) from 9am – 4.30pm until March 17, 2019 (9am-6pm from March 18, 2019 to October 20, 2019).

Address:

RHS Garden Wisley, Wisley, GU23 6QB.

Price:

2019 Admission prices – 10% off with all online ticket purchases (except groups)

Non-members (excluding Gift Aid) –

Adult – £14.50

Family (2 plus 2) – £37

Children 5-16 years – £7.25

Children 4 and under go free

RHS members –

Free entry with a family guest (entitlement may vary according to membership type)

Book tickets:

Call 01483 224234, go online at rhs.org.uk/wisley or visit RHS Garden Wisley in person.

Accessibility at Woking Shopping

Can We Help?

Our friendly and helpful centre staff are always on hand to offer you help, advice or assistance. Look out for them throughout the centre.

Town Centre Buggy

Operated by Woking Community Transport, the Town Centre Buggy offers free transport, Monday to Friday, between 9.30am and 1.30pm for anyone who has difficulties getting around the pedestrianised areas of Woking Town Centre. The Buggy calls at a number of popular spots around the Town Centre and is quite flexible, although cannot operate inside the Shopping Centres.

Hire Of Powered Wheelchairs

Woking Shopmobility offers power scooters, manual and powered wheelchairs for hire, available for booking in advance. A companion service is also available to those unable to use a powered wheelchair or scooter, or who require extra assistance. A small charge is payable for the services. For further information, please contact Woking Shopmobility on 01483 776612 or www.wokingshopmobility.co.uk.

In addition to a dedicated Shopmobility centre and access from the car park to all levels of the Peacock centre via the lifts, Woking Shopping also offers:

  • Accessible toilets – situated on Wolsey Place and Peacocks Place

  • Street level step-free entrances to allow easy access

  • Automatic doors for ease of customers

  • A Hearing Loop is available in the Centre Management Suite located on Level 3 of the Blue Car Park

Door To Door Transport

Woking Dial-A-Ride Service, operated by Woking Community Transport, is a door-to-door transport service for Borough residents with reduced mobility. The service can collect you from your home and take you to destinations across the Borough, including Woking Town Centre. A connection is available between the Dial-a-Ride service, the Town Centre Buggy and Woking Shopmobility at the Mobility Exchange opposite the ground floor entrance to the Ambassadors Theatre. The buses are specially adapted to cater for people with all disabilities including those using wheelchairs, and assistance dogs are welcomed. A small charge is payable for the service. For further information or to book please contact Woking Community Transport on 01483 744800 or www.wokingbustler.org.uk

Ambassadors Theatre – Wheelchairs And Hearing Loop

Theatre-goers can book wheelchairs through Woking Shopmobility for shows at The Ambassadors Theatre next door (which also has a hearing loop available for visitors with impaired hearing).

Blue Badge Holders

Woking Borough Council offers Blue Badge Holders concessionary parking in their Town Centre car parks. Extra wide disabled parking bays are available in the Shoppers, Victoria Way and Heathside car parks. A proximity card, available from Woking Borough Council, is required to access the car parks. For further information and to apply please contact Woking Borough Council on 01483 755855 or visit woking.gov.uk/parking-and-streets/disabled-parking

Contact Shopmobility

Equipment to help you stay safe

Simple equipment or small changes to your home can make the difference between living independently and needing someone to help you or it can make caring for someone easier.

Equipment providers can help with everything from walking aids and grab rails to equipment to help you get dressed.

Some equipment can be loaned by Surrey County Council if you have eligible needs. However you can also get advice on what is available to meet your needs and purchase equipment directly from a range of different companies.

Search Surrey Information Point to find a local equipment provider or complete our quick and easy-to use online checklist to get an indication of whether you are likely to qualify for social care support. As well as providing you with information on the support you could access locally, the checklist will also tell you if it might be worth spending time to do a full support needs assessment.

You can also get advice on what is available to meet your needs and purchase equipment directly from a range of different companies. The Disabled Living Foundation has introduced AskSARA which is an online self-assessment tool that could be useful to identify equipment which may help you.

Walking aids

If you are looking for mobility aids such as a walking stick or a walking frame, you can speak to your GP to request a referral to Physiotherapy. Your GP will be able to discuss referrals to other appropriate services such as the Wheelchair service, Continence service and District nurses.

Equipment already on loan?

Over 100,000 pieces of equipment are loaned in Surrey across the course of the year. This includes things like: walking frames, crutches, grab rails, bath seats, commodes and adjustable beds.

A lot of equipment can be reused or recycled when it is no longer required and can then be used to support other people in need.

If you already have equipment on loan from Surrey County Council and your needs have changed, or you think your equipment needs attention, please let us know.

We will advise you on how your equipment needs can be reviewed, arrange to get equipment checked (where necessary) or how you can arrange to return any equipment that is no longer required.

A beginner’s guide to visiting RHS Garden Wisley when the weather is good

I have only ever once been to RHS Garden Wisley and that was a very, very long time ago…

Many of us never quite find the time to visit some of the fantastic tourist attractions sitting on our doorstep, so it was about time I tested one of them out.

Plus apparently, RHS Garden Wisley was a hot spot for Pokemon GO-goers and being that my boyfriend was an avid fan, he suggested the day out (how convenient).

What is RHS Garden Wisley?

Wisley is one of four gardens run by the Royal Horticultural Society. The large and diverse garden covers 240 acres and features formal and informal decorative gardens, several glasshouses and an extensive arboretum.

Throughout the year visitors can enjoy various seasonal events taking place at the site, from rare flower displays and horticultural talks to children’s activities and bat walks.

Entry:

The garden is very accessible by car, located literally just off the A3 between Ripley and Cobham. Type GU23 6QB into your sat nav.

We parked in the venue’s large free gravel car park immediately outside the garden entrance.

Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10am-6pm and Sat, Sun and Bank Holidays 9am-6pm (last entry one hour before closing)

Tickets: Entry costs £13 for adults and £6.50 for children (5-16 years). If you book online in advance you will get 10% – visit rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley or call 0845 2609000

Membership:

Members get into RHS Garden Wisley for free. There are various annual membership options which includes unlimited entry. These are:

  • Individual – costs £42.75 per year by direct debit or £57. Entitles RHS Garden entry for RHS member and one family guest or two children.
  • Joint – costs £62.25 by direct debit or £83. Entitles RHS Garden entry for two RHS members and one family guest and up to four children.

It works out great value, as if a family turned up and paid on the door for general access, that would cost more than the total costs of the membership.

Once you become an RHS member, you receive a monthly magazine, offers and discounted tickets to RHS Flower Shows and can also get free advice from RHS advisors.

Laura checking out the map of RHS Wisley

First impressions:

Within minutes of parking and collecting our tickets from the box office, we were inside RHS Garden Wisley.

A friendly member of staff welcomed guests upon arrival and there was a huge map of the site, highlighting the must-see attractions.

As the sun was shining and we had the whole day to kill, we decided to take a left and go exploring on a whim.

We explored the pretty Conifer Lawn, Bowles Corner, Weather Hill, Rock Garden, Wild Garden and Seven Acres before returning to our starting point three leisurely hours later.

We took in the wonderful aromas of roses, the buzzing of bees, the tricking pond sounds and the laughter of children running up hills and hiding behind trees.

Despite it being a hot Saturday afternoon in the school summer holidays, we never felt cramped or rushed, meaning we could wander around each beauty spot in our own time.

Facilities:

Owner of a weak bladder I was pleased to find toilets dotted all around the site, especially near to the Glasshouse, half way around the gardens.

There are special facilities and guided walks for wheelchair users, the visually impaired and hard of hearing, those with learning disabilities and mobility scooter users.

Toilets are located all around the site

Eating and drinking:

As it was a beautiful day, we decided to pack a picnic and enjoy our homemade spread on one of the pristine lawns.

But there are plenty of other outlets for food, including The Coffee Shop (at the entrance outside the gate), Glasshouse Café (next to the Glasshouse), The Honest Sausage (at Witan Green) and The Restaurant and Food Hall (near the entrance).

Enjoy alfresco dining at RHS Wisley

When we visited the Glasshouse, a retro ice cream van sat outside selling Mr Whippy’s so we joined the queue to get our hands on one.

Shopping and exit:

You can visit the shop upon arrival or exit and it is stocked with wonderful gifts, plants, gardening gadgets and pretty ornaments (but beware like most gift shops, items aren’t cheap).

Being a bit of a foodie (ok, big foodie), I headed straight over to the locally grown jams and chutneys, sweet treats and fruit wines.

Peruse the gift shop

As a thank you for taking him to RHS Garden Wisley, my boyfriend bought me a recipe book from the large celebrity chef collection in the shop (how sweet).

RHS Garden Wisley is absolutely stunning. You can experience the gardens through all of your senses, from the scent of the flowers and the buzzing of the bees to the taste of freshly baked cakes in the restaurant.

It’s a great day out for couples, families, friends, in-laws you need to entertain and even a perfect escape alone.

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