This weekend's National Gardens Scheme Festival will see our fundraising grow in spades

by Fabian French Director of Fundraising

Private gardens across England and Wales will open their gates to the public during 15-16 June for the first ever National Gardens Festival Weekend. Set to be the largest garden visiting event in history, with 800 openings planned over the two days, the Festival is being organised by the National Gardens Scheme (NGS) and aims to raise £500,000 for Marie Curie and other nursing and caring charities.

The NGS has invited as many gardens as possible to open over the two days for a unique weekend of garden charity giving. New research commissioned by Marie Curie to support the Festival Weekend revealed that for many of us, a garden holds an extremely special place in our hearts – and for those approaching the end of their lives, gardens can hold even more sentimental value, with many choosing to spend as much time as they can in them. All the money donated to us from the Festival Weekend will go towards helping Marie Curie continue to provide expert care and support to terminally ill people and their families, at the end of their lives - at home or in one of our nine hospices. Our services are always free to patients and their families, thanks to the generous support of the public and organisations such as the National Gardens Scheme. Thanks to the hard work of garden owners and the enduring enthusiasm of visitors, the NGS has donated £25million to nursing and caring charities over the past 10 years and Marie Curie has benefited hugely from this support. This is why we are urging as many people as possible to visit a festival garden this weekend. There’s a Festival Weekend garden to suit all tastes – big, small, modern, traditional, rural and urban. To find a garden open near you, visit or use the free NGS app for iPhone and iPad.