Helmsley Walled Garden – Must Visit For Garden Enthusiasts

in Helmsley

Address: Cleveland Way, Helmsley, North Yorkshire, YO62 5AH

Phone: +44 01439 771427

Email: info@helmsleywalledgarden.org.uk

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Located in the picturesque town of Helmsley, North Yorkshire, the Helmsley Walled Garden offers a serene escape into nature. This beautiful five-acre garden is rich in history and horticultural beauty, making it a must-visit destination for garden enthusiasts, history buffs, and those seeking tranquility. Let’s delve into the various aspects that make this garden a gem in North York.

The garden is located at Cleveland Way, Helmsley, North Yorkshire YO62 5AH.

The Helmsley Walled Garden, established in the 18th century, is a historic and picture perfect garden situated near the imposing ruins of Helmsley Castle. The garden is located within the North York Moors National Park. This garden is not only a beautiful garden but also proof of the the dedication of the volunteers who have restored it to its former glory. It serves as a living museum of horticultural history and a thriving community project.

History of Helmsley Walled Garden

The Helmsley Walled Garden was originally created in 1759 to provide fruits, vegetables, and flowers for the nearby Duncombe Park estate. Over the centuries, it witnessed various phases of neglect and rejuvenation. The Victorian era saw the garden at its peak, showcasing elaborate designs and diverse plant collections. However, the 20th century brought decline, especially after the World Wars, until a community-led restoration project began in the mid-1990s, breathing new life into this historic site.

The garden’s revival is a story of passion and perseverance. Volunteers played a crucial role in its restoration, transforming it into a beautiful five-acre garden that we see today. Visitors can now explore a place where history and horticulture intertwine harmoniously. The plant centre offers a wide selection of seasonal plants for sale, including those grown on site through the latest horticultural project, Learning to Grow, enhancing the overall visitor experience alongside the garden shop.

Garden Layout and Design

The Helmsley Walled Garden is meticulously divided into several sections, each offering a unique glimpse into garden design and plant collections. Notable features include the Vine House Café, where visitors can enjoy a coffee amidst the beauty of nature. The café itself is housed in a historic structure that once supported grapevines and other climbing plants.

One of the key attractions is the Hot Border, which showcases a stunning autumn glow in October and adds to the garden’s seasonal beauty.

Key areas to explore include the herbaceous borders, the kitchen garden, and the medicinal garden. The garden also boasts a variety of flower beds, orchards, and water features that add to its charm. The thoughtful layout ensures that visitors can wander through different sections, each with its own distinct character and plant species.

Plant Collections

The Helmsley Walled Garden is home to a diverse range of plants, showcasing both native and exotic species. Seasonal highlights include vibrant spring bulbs, summer perennials, and autumnal displays of foliage. The kitchen garden is particularly impressive, growing a variety of vegetables that are used in the café and sold to visitors.

The garden also emphasizes biodiversity with its wide array of plant species, which attract a variety of wildlife. The careful curation of botanical collections ensures that there is always something new to see, regardless of the time of year.

Visitor Experience

Visiting the Helmsley Walled Garden is a delightful experience, with plenty of amenities to ensure comfort and enjoyment. Dogs on leads are welcome in the garden. The visitor center provides information and maps to help you navigate the garden. Guided tours are available for those who wish to learn more about the garden’s history and horticulture.

The Vine House Café offers a charming spot to relax and enjoy a coffee or light meal, made from ingredients grown in the garden itself. The café’s ambiance, combined with the garden’s beauty, makes for a perfect day out. Additionally, the garden hosts various workshops and events, providing educational opportunities and hands-on experiences for gardening enthusiasts.

Community and Volunteering

The garden’s success is largely due to its strong sense of community. Volunteers are integral to the garden’s maintenance and development. They participate in everything from planting and pruning to leading educational programs and workshops. The garden’s community projects aim to engage locals and visitors alike, fostering a sense of ownership and pride in this historic site.

Volunteering at the Helmsley Walled Garden offers individuals the chance to learn new skills, meet like-minded people, and contribute to the preservation of a vital piece of local heritage.

Events and Workshops

Throughout the year, the Helmsley Walled Garden hosts a variety of events and workshops. These include gardening workshops, seasonal festivals, and craft fairs. Notable events often take place in August and October, celebrating the changing seasons with themed activities and displays.

Workshops are designed to cater to all skill levels, from novice gardeners to experienced horticulturists. They cover a range of topics, including plant care, garden design, and sustainable gardening practices. These events provide valuable learning opportunities and enhance the overall visitor experience.

How to Get There and Contact Information

The Helmsley Walled Garden is easily accessible by car and public transport. Located within the York Moors National Park, near the town center, it is well-signposted and provides ample parking. Visitors can also enjoy scenic walks to the garden from nearby attractions such as the Cleveland Way and Helmsley Castle.

Contact details are available on the garden’s official website, where you can also find a map of the garden, opening hours, and additional visitor information. Whether you’re planning a visit in August, October, or any other time of the year, the Helmsley Walled Garden promises a rewarding and enriching experience.

For those bringing pets, the garden is dog friendly, ensuring that every member of the family can enjoy a visit. The garden’s accessibility features also make it welcoming for all visitors, ensuring everyone can explore and appreciate its beauty.

Enjoy your visit to this historic and beautiful garden, where history, nature, and community come together in perfect harmony. Find more details on the garden’s website and plan your visit to this enchanting destination in North Yorkshire.

Opening Times

From April till October from 10am till 5pm. Last entry 4.30pm


Type Price
Children Under 16 £0.00
Adult £8.00


  • On-Site Parking
  • Child Friendly
  • Outdoor

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