Flooding at The Weir Garden, how Woodberry helped in a hurry
The Weir Garden is a Victorian garden on the banks of the River Wye in Herefordshire. Located at a bend in the river, it is particularly prone to flooding but is a favourite spot for many visitors who come to enjoy the spectacular views and picnic at the river’s edge.
Originally pleasure gardens for the Mansion House, these were laid out in 1788. Vast improvements were made to the gardens when Roger Parr bought the property and estate in 1923.
Visitor numbers have grown from 19,000 to 35,000 per year in last 5 years
The garden has a tea marquee, with plans for this to become a permanent café building in 2021. Visitors are welcome to bring a picnic, with a picnic area located at the riverbank. There is also a children’s play area
However, the property is prone to flooding and this proves a big challenge for the team to keep it open and safe for visitors.
Last September, The Weir Garden experienced a flash flood which meant their picnic tables on the lower level at river bank were washed away. Having previously purchased outdoor furniture from Woodberry, Chris was able to quickly put in a call to request help.
Woodberry was able to supply replacement outdoor picnic tables within 3 days which enabled Chris and the team at the Weir Garden to provide a seamless visitor experience.
In February 2020, the floodwaters rose to their highest ever recorded and a third of the garden was underwater. Fortunately as the garden is on a steep slope up the river bank, the flood waters did not affect too much of the garden and the water levels subsided quite quickly.
It has affected pathway accessibility for visitors where some pathways are closed to ensure the safety of visitors. The flood water caused tree roots to become unstable as well and felled some of the older trees.
We asked Chris how he valued support from Woodberry
Chris Strong: Visitor Experience Manager The Weir Garden
‘Late last Autumn we unfortunately were hit by some major flooding. Our normal procedures were followed in preparation for this but unfortunately the flooding hit its highest at the time and our picnic benches were lost. A plan was needed to provide a quick response ensuring no disruption to our visitors. Being a 10 acre site, we needed seating. A phone call to Pete at Woodberry’s had our problem resolved within a few days – the advantage of working with a small business like Woodberry is they provide a personal service, they understand our site and our requirements, but also looking after us long term.’
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