The hotly anticipated fifth RHS garden, RHS Bridgewater, will open in July, it has been announced.

The Yeo Valley Organic Garden, designed by Tom Massey

At the Greening Great Britain launch in London, director general Sue Biggs said that the garden will open to the public on Thursday 30 July 2020.

Bridgewater, in Salford, Greater Manchester, is the first new garden for the RHS in nearly two decades. It is hoped it will bring the RHS's world class horticulture to within an hour of 8.2 million people.

The RHS Bridgewater entrance
© Tom Stuart-Smith

The 154 acre site was once the grounds of Worsley New Hall, and its transformation is one of the biggest of its kind in Europe.

Designer Tom Stuart-Smith is responsible for the overall planning, or 'masterplan' of the garden, which includes a walled garden the size of six football pitches.

To mark the opening there will be ten days of events in the garden in August.

At the launch today, director general of the RHS Sue Biggs said: "[Finding and building Bridgewater] has been the most amazing experience and it is transformative fro the RHS and the North West. It will be a world class garden when we open, but it won't be entirely finished. We are growing it with the people of Salford."

Biggs said that while they were discussing acquiring a new garden when she first started at the RHS, but the search to find the fifth garden only really began five years ago. "When it was announced we were looking, within three months we had found the garden...and Bridgewater had something magical about it."

Staff at the garden currently number almost 40, but that number is expected to reach 100 by July. It is the first garden the RHS has ever built from scratch.


Daisy Bowie-Sell is digital editor of Gardens Illustrated. She has previously worked as a journalist for publications including the Daily Telegraph, WhatsOnStage and Time Out London