Ham Cottage, a brief history of bluebells

This lovely eight acre garden at Ham Cottage, Ardingly, West Sussex has been created over the last 30 years by owners Peter and Andrea Browne. After restoring the derelict 18th century cottage they set about expanding the original quarter acre into the current ‘mini Wakehurst’. In spring, bluebells and azaleas create a wonderful clash of colours. Join Peter now for an insight into the garden and into the fascinating history of our native bluebells, what differentiates them from their Spanish cousins and how they have been used through history…

A closer look…


There’s year round interest in this garden with colour bursting from the many borders, rhododendrons and winter garden. In the summer, near the house, colour bursts from everywhere. A stream flows through the bog garden down over waterfalls into a bluebell carpeted wood in spring. There is a  natural amphitheatre within an old sandstone quarry, often used for plays and concerts, and sculptures and mechanical contraptions giving added interest.

Plan a visit when Ham Cottage reopens – you can keep an eye on dates here

This film is being released during our Gardens and Health Week. For more information click here.

If you enjoyed this content please consider making a donation to help us continue to support our nursing and health beneficiaries



Don’t miss a thing

Sign up to hear more about gardens, events and our
activities throughout the year

By completing this form, you confirm that you are aged 18 years or over and that you are happy to receive emails from the National Garden Scheme in accordance with our Privacy Policy. We will never share your details with anyone else without your express permission.


Our donations for 2019

Donor 1 £185,000
Donor 2 £130,000
Donor 3 £100,000
Donor 4 £75,000
Donor 5 £85,000
Donor 6 £85,000
Donor 7 £206,208
Donor 8 £500,000
Donor 9 £500,000
Donor 10 £400,000
Donor 11 £500,000
Donor 12 £250,000