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The Courtyard

Sheerness

A young garden and home created in October 2016 by the BBC DIY SOS team. This is our family garden and smallholding which is enjoyed by our four young children daily. Our family garden has planted borders and raised beds. Having raised flower beds aids our two young sons who are full-time wheelchair users, to enjoy their garden too.
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    Our family was lucky enough to be chosen to be helped by the BBC's DIY SOS team, as such our old home was completely knocked down and rebuilt, with the garden laid with lawn and planted with half a dozen young statement trees to add interest, focal points and noise from their rustling leaves. We have planted the garden to meet the sensory needs of our children and we hope that others with learning difficulties/special educational needs, will enjoy our garden too!

    Since the programme we have been busy filling the beds and borders with an array of plants. The garden is fully wheelchair accessible and has a tarmac path to enable smooth passage for wheelchair users to enjoy the raised pond, herb and flower beds - making it highly suitable for wheelchair users. All of the garden's flower beds and borders are planted full to bursting, with colourful or scented flowers, as well textured foliage to invoke the senses.

    We are by no means knowledgable gardeners, we plant and grow the things that we like to make the garden beautiful to look at and enjoyable to sit in.

    Our young family's garden is very much heading towards a senses based approach: the smell of the scent from the flowers, lavender and herbs; the noise you hear from the wind through the bamboo and the sound of trickling waters from the pond. Let your hands run along the tall grasses and brush past the lavender and mint leaves releasing their scent. We invite you to share this unique opportunity to explore our sensory based garden, that should be fully enjoyed, but not just with your eyes.

    Due to our family's hobbies and interests we have planted flowers and plants that are favourites for bees, butterflies and other wild life. Our honey bees can be seen visiting our garden and then whizzing back to their hives. We encourage our children to grow their own vegetables and this can be seen in their little vegetable patch. This year we are growing chard, giant pumpkins, tomatoes and courgettes.

    We encourage you to take a walk through the paddock (which is a work in progress), on the rough stone path, to meet and greet our three Ryeland sheep (Teddy, Margo and Barbara). We also have a few hens and pigs, which are always pleased to see new faces. Meanwhile at the very top of the paddock you'll see our busy honey bees, flying and whizzing in and out of their hives, collecting nectar and pollen. The rough stone path is accessible to all, bumpy for wheelchair users and can be muddy at times (out door shoes/wellies are a good idea).

    Whilst we are sure that every family will enjoy our garden, we warmly invite large groups of friends & family, as well as those from care homes, day centres and those with additional needs/disabilities to contact us so that you can have sole use of the garden, paddock and time with the animals. With advanced booking I am more able to help you, ensuring that your visit will be thoroughly enjoyed by all.

    For families with children with disabilities, don't be worried or stressed about visiting - having children with special abilities ourselves, we know how difficult it can be to visit places - we welcome everyone - whatever their ability!

    Parking can be limited and there is zero 'on road parking', we therefore ask that all visitors book their tickets for this event in advance. Please do call ahead to book your visit and car sharing is activity encouraged.

    We are open every Monday and the first Sunday of each month - and can open the garden privately for families, groups, day centres etc. who would like to take advantage of our setting and have a unique experience.

Features and Attractions

Sensory based, family focused garden. We are a smallholding with a few hens, pigs, sheep, honey bees and hives, a small raised fish pond and a little pony. We welcome all families - especially those with children with special needs.

The Courtyard- Canceled

Refreshments:

On this day, this garden is open by arrangement, which means that you will have to contact the owner to arrange visits for groups.

Pre-booking essential, please go to our events page to book your tickets.

Admission by donation

Admission:
  • Adult:
  • Concessions:
  • Child:

On this day, this garden opens as part of .

Admission also gets you entry to this garden in the area:

Click the dropdown arrow next to the opening date above to find details of entry costs and to add the opening to your online calendar.

Click on any opening date on the calendar above to find details of entry times, entry price and to add the opening to your online calendar.

  • Regular opening
  • Open by arrangement only
  • Cancelled opening
Owner Information

Kyle Ratcliffe

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How to find us

The Courtyard
Elmley Road
Minster On Sea
Sheerness
Kent
ME12 3SS

Located on The Isle of Sheppey, 11m from the M2.
  • More detailed directions
    From the A2500, travel past the rugby club, over the small r'about & turn immediately R after the 2nd hand car lot. Our garden is situated to the rear of the 5th bungalow on the L.
Accessibility information

Tarmac and hard stone pathways and drive.

More about The Courtyard

Our family was lucky enough to be chosen to be helped by the BBC's DIY SOS team, as such our old home was completely knocked down and rebuilt, with the garden laid with lawn and planted with half a dozen young statement trees to add interest, focal points and noise from their rustling leaves. We have planted the garden to meet the sensory needs of our children and we hope that others with learning difficulties/special educational needs, will enjoy our garden too!

Since the programme we have been busy filling the beds and borders with an array of plants. The garden is fully wheelchair accessible and has a tarmac path to enable smooth passage for wheelchair users to enjoy the raised pond, herb and flower beds - making it highly suitable for wheelchair users. All of the garden's flower beds and borders are planted full to bursting, with colourful or scented flowers, as well textured foliage to invoke the senses.

We are by no means knowledgable gardeners, we plant and grow the things that we like to make the garden beautiful to look at and enjoyable to sit in.

Our young family's garden is very much heading towards a senses based approach: the smell of the scent from the flowers, lavender and herbs; the noise you hear from the wind through the bamboo and the sound of trickling waters from the pond. Let your hands run along the tall grasses and brush past the lavender and mint leaves releasing their scent. We invite you to share this unique opportunity to explore our sensory based garden, that should be fully enjoyed, but not just with your eyes.

Due to our family's hobbies and interests we have planted flowers and plants that are favourites for bees, butterflies and other wild life. Our honey bees can be seen visiting our garden and then whizzing back to their hives. We encourage our children to grow their own vegetables and this can be seen in their little vegetable patch. This year we are growing chard, giant pumpkins, tomatoes and courgettes.

We encourage you to take a walk through the paddock (which is a work in progress), on the rough stone path, to meet and greet our three Ryeland sheep (Teddy, Margo and Barbara). We also have a few hens and pigs, which are always pleased to see new faces. Meanwhile at the very top of the paddock you'll see our busy honey bees, flying and whizzing in and out of their hives, collecting nectar and pollen. The rough stone path is accessible to all, bumpy for wheelchair users and can be muddy at times (out door shoes/wellies are a good idea).

Whilst we are sure that every family will enjoy our garden, we warmly invite large groups of friends & family, as well as those from care homes, day centres and those with additional needs/disabilities to contact us so that you can have sole use of the garden, paddock and time with the animals. With advanced booking I am more able to help you, ensuring that your visit will be thoroughly enjoyed by all.

For families with children with disabilities, don't be worried or stressed about visiting - having children with special abilities ourselves, we know how difficult it can be to visit places - we welcome everyone - whatever their ability!

Parking can be limited and there is zero 'on road parking', we therefore ask that all visitors book their tickets for this event in advance. Please do call ahead to book your visit and car sharing is activity encouraged.

We are open every Monday and the first Sunday of each month - and can open the garden privately for families, groups, day centres etc. who would like to take advantage of our setting and have a unique experience.

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