16th to 23rd June 2021:

If you love the perfume of roses on an early summer’s day and have always promised yourself time to discover more of this vast and varied genus, then this is the tour for you.

This tour is a celebration of the rose, doyenne of the English Garden. If you love the perfume of roses on an early summer’s day and have always promised yourself time to discover more of this vast and varied genus, then this is the tour for you. We start in southern England on a gentle journey to enjoy roses in some wonderful gardens, featuring Sissinghurst, Mottisfont and Pashley Manor as well as a selection of exceptional private gardens. Then journey north to the rural county of Shropshire on the Welsh borders to visit the outstanding David Austin show garden collection as well as a ‘behind the scenes’, private view of David Austin’s own garden. Also featured are Coughton Court and Wollerton Old Hall plus a visit to Michael Marriott’s own new garden and an opportunity to meet Katherine Swift, author of The Morville Hours, a story of her garden. Don your rose-tinted specs and see gardens in a new light. Stroll from rose to rose discussing the merits of under-planting, mulching, pruning, budding, training, and indeed even the name of the rose in the company of a great rose enthusiast & expert Paul Zimmerman with guest appearances from Michael Marriott, Rosarian at David Austin Roses and Charles Quest-Riston, author of RHS Encyclopaedia of Roses (Dorling Kindersley, 2011) . The tour starts at The Winchester Wessex Hotel with one transfer organized from London Heathrow and London Gatwick airports and ends in central London with the opportunity to book an additional night at the Sofitel London Heathrow but in addition, in Sussex you will stay at Ockenden Manor Hotel, a charming and tranquil Elizabethan Manor House, further north we stay at the award-winning Brockencote Hall an outstanding example of a country house hotel. Both tour hotels offer good food and hospitality with dinners with wine, bed & breakfasts all included.


The tour starts with a rendezvous at the The Winchester Wessex Hotel in Hampshire at 18:00hrs where we include the overnight accommodation on a dinner, bed & breakfast basis.  A coach will make one pick up at Gatwick Airport at 12:00 noon and at 13:30 at Heathrow Airport (Terminal to be confirmed) before driving to Winchester arriving at approximately 15:00hrs.

Day 1: 
Leaving Winchester, we have arranged an early visit to the famous Rose garden at Mottisfont featuring the National Collection of old-fashioned roses started by Graham Stuart Thomas who did much to enhance our understanding of roses. You will be met in the walled garden for an introduction to this important collection but also have time to wander. At Redenham Park there is a rich tapestry of planting with roses woven throughout: in the designated rose garden; in the picking borders; trained up walls and through the fruit trees; and even reflected in the swimming pool. Lady Clark generously welcomes us to her garden with an invitation to a delicious lunch. Then visit a very private garden with a romantic rose garden with weather permitting, an afternoon tea included in the garden. Journey across country to Ockenden Manor with time to settle in before an evening meal together.

Day 2: 
Following an early breakfast depart at 08:15AM for a special early bird morning visit to Sissinghurst Castle Garden accompanied by the Head Gardener. We will particularly concentrate on the roses in the White Garden and Rose Garden created in the 1930s by the poet and garden writer Vita Sackville-West and her husband, author and diplomat, Harold Nicolson. Sissinghurst is one of the most famous and influential of our 20th century gardens in which use of roses is a key feature. Frankham Manor is a garden in the careful making where we discover a simple, striking, all pink rose garden and enjoy lunch together before heading off to Pashley Manor. In Britain we have two great rose breeders and suppliers: Michael Marriott has spent his career working with David Austin Roses; here at Pashley the roses have all come from Peter Beales Roses. This should be an interesting visit. Much is made of the rose in this beautiful garden: colour-themed in the rose garden and elsewhere, interplanted with cream foxgloves, lilies and lavenders. Return to Ockenden Manor where we dine together.

Day 3: 

Start the day at the private garden of Clinton Lodge where we are invited by owner Lady Collum, to view her garden followed by a delicious light lunch. Lady Collum has a deep knowledge and quiet passion for her wonderful compartmentalised garden surrounding an early 17th century house with unforgettable herbaceous borders, fragrant herb garden, green knot terrace, and scented shady glade all interwoven with roses.  In the afternoon head for Brighton with time for a stroll along the sea front or along the pier of fashionable Brighton. Take yourself to the shops or to see the exotic Brighton Pavillion.    Return to Ockenden Manor where we dine together where you are joined by guest lecturer, Charles Quest-Ritson who will give a pre-dinner rose themed talk.

Day 4: 
Leaving Sussex, journey northwards via the Cotswolds to visit the enchanting garden of Kiftsgate Court, home of the famous rambler, Rosa filipes ‘Kiftsgate’ as special guests of owners, Mr & Mrs Chambers you will be shown the garden before having lunch together. In the afternoon visit another classic British garden, Hidcote Manor Gardens with time to stroll around and discover many roses throughout the famous gardens from the white garden to the hot borders. Continuing northwards to Brockencote Manor Hotel with time to settle in before dining together.

Day 5: 
A day at David Austin Roses for a ‘behind the scenes’ tour with Michael Marriott, including a private view of David Austin’s own garden, a rose hybridizing class and lunch plus time to visit the rose themed shop and time to wander by yourselves and drink in this incredible nursery. Return to Brockencote Manor Hotel with time to settle in before dining together.

Day 6:
Driving across to the Welsh borders towards Ludlow, with a chance for a stroll around the thriving medieval market town before a special invite to visit Michael Marriott’s own new small garden already featuring Michael’s favourite roses. Coffee included. Then travel across country to visit Coughton Court, home of the Throckmortons, presented with the Award of Garden Excellence by the World Federation of Rose Societies. Start with an organic rosé wine tasting and delicious lunch, and before a guided tour of the gardens boasting over 75 different varieties of roses beautifully grown in mixed borders in the walled garden. This is followed with a chance to visit the house before returning to Brockencote Manor Hotel with time to settle in before a pre-dinner talk with Michael Marriott, chief rosarian to David Austin Roses who will join you also for the evening meal.

Day 7:
A morning visit to Wollerton Old Hall, a delightful 20th century garden around a 16th century manor house with wonderful borders and a fine nursery. We are invited to lunch before visiting the nearby Hodnet Hall, home of the Heber-Percy family, with well-kept beds of hybrid tea roses. In the mid-afternoon head south for London. The tour ends at approximately 19:30 at the Sofitel, Heathrow. For those wishing us to book this additional night please state clearly on your booking form, price and availability on request. This is very conveniently placed for those that need to fly home the next day or continue with their plans to extend their stay.


The tour price is: £3995 per person with a single supplement of £800 levied by the hotels.

The Tour price includes:
One night dinner, bed & breakfast at the Winchester Wessex Hotel three nights dinner (with wine), bed & breakfast at Ockenden Manor Hotel; three nights dinner (with wine), bed & breakfast at Brockencote Manor Hotel plus seven lunches as stated in the itinerary. Entry to all the gardens as set out in the itinerary; Coaching including the airport transfer to the return to the London Heathrow Sofitel on Day 7.

The Tour price does not include:
Any extras at the hotels or travel insurance that we strongly advice should be taken out by every traveller, drinks other than as mentioned in the itinerary or any other extra services at hotels.

Please note that hotels used by Boxwood Tours are invariably hotels of character featuring a variety of rooms and styles. The price does not include flights, any extras at the hotels or travel insurance that we strongly advice should be taken out by every traveller.

Arena Tours Ltd is a company committed to customer satisfaction and consumer financial protection. We are therefore pleased to announce that, at no extra cost to you, and in accordance with ”The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018” all passengers booking with Boxwood Tours are fully protected in the unlikely event of our insolvency, please contact us for further details.

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