I often think that I grew up in a garden rather than a house. My large family lived in a 'retired' boarding school dormitory house in Reading with an acre of garden, at least half of which was orchard and soft fruit bushes.
My earliest memories are of being wheeled about (at a great speed!) in a wheelbarrow, picking blackberries from the huge hedge, topping and tailing gooseberries, swinging from the beautiful walnut tree and failing to grow wallflowers that I sowed in a bare patch of earth next to a wall.
There was a wild flower that I could dismantle to turn into a miniature parrot and set into an array on a grass stem.
When the family grew smaller and we moved to a small suburban house in Manchester, my mother still grew her roses and I developed a taste for strawberry growing, leaving only enough lawn for two to sunbathe on! During my student days, studying Biochemistry and Animal Physiology, another move took my mother and I to a garden in the North Pennines with a large bed of blackcurrants, the fruit with which I learned to love jam-making, despite the tiny size of the kitchen.
My first forays into whole garden-making arose through negotiations for my husband and I to be allowed to keep our puppy in our rented London flat. I offered to keep up the garden in exchange, and that Spring the display from the 250 bulbs I had planted in the front garden was spectacular!
|Course Title||Date Held||Organised By|
|Masterclasses in Design and Planting||Sept 2014||Oxford School of Garden Design|
|Health, Safety and Environmental Test: Passed||April 2014||British Association of Landscape Industries|
|Coaching for Leadership and Management||Dec 2011-Nov 2012||NBSL|
|Designing and Building Gardens on Difficult Sites||Nov 2011||Society of Garden Designers|
|Construction and Construction Drawings||Oct 2011||Society of Garden Designers|
|Train to Gain: Business Mentoring||Dec 2010-Feb 2011||NBSL|
|Coaching for High Growth (inc.Business Mentoring)||May-Nov 2010||Solutions for Business|
|The Essentials of Excellence||Oct 2010||Society of Garden Designers|
|Marketing Workshop||Oct 2010||Business Link|
|Negotiation Skills Workshop||Jul 2010||Business Link|
|Specification Writing for Real Life||Mar 2010||Society of Garden Designers|
|Pictorial Meadows, Green Roofs & Rain Gardens||Dec 2009||Society of Garden Designers|
|Heavenly Gardens in Hellish Places||Oct 2009||Society of Garden Designers|
|Finance & Business||Nov 2008||Finance Tree|
|Protect Your Website||Sep 2009||Own-It|
|Water in the Garden||May 2009||Society of Garden Designers|
|Making Money from Intellectual Property||Jan 2009||Own-It|
|Surveying with Confidence||Sep 2008||Society of Garden Designers|
|Business Development Programme||Jun-Oct 2008||The Enterprise Agency|
|The Garden: A Reflection of Its Time||Jun 2007||RHS|
|Not So Soft: Planting to Define Space||Apr 2007||Society of Garden Designers|
|Unleash Your Potential||Mar 2007||Women Into the Network|
|Stone||Mar 2006||Society of Garden Designers|
|Running a Garden Design Practice||Mar 2006||Society of Garden Designers|
|Advanced Certificate in Horticulture (RHS)||Apr 2003- Jun 2005||RHS / Houghall College|
|BTEC National Award in Horticulture||Sep 2003-Jun 2004||BTEC / Houghall College|
|City & Guilds Certificate Component: Garden Design||Apr-Jun 2003||City & Guilds / Houghall College|