Gardens event raises hundreds for historic town church

An open gardens event raised more than £700 towards the maintenance and renovation of an historic Melton church.

By Nick Rennie
Wednesday, 15th June 2022, 3:15 pm
Sheila Sulley on the stall in her garden for the St John's Church fundraiser
Sheila Sulley on the stall in her garden for the St John's Church fundraiser

Seven gardens were opened to the public on Sunday in aid of St John The Baptist Catholic Church, in Thorpe End.

People could visit the church and the town’s convent as part of the event, which was blessed with fine, sunny weather.

Visitors went from throughout the midlands, as well the Melton area, with many delighted with the hospitality and refreshments served in the various gardens.

One of the gardens opened for the St John's Church fundraiser

Those who attended the convent garden were offered Christmas cake, which although unseasonable proved very popular.

Frances Levett, chair of the charity Friends of St John's, which organised the event, said: "We are really pleased with the way it all went.

"We had never tried anything like this before, so we were unsure about what would happen and whether we were publicising it in the right way.

"The fine weather played an important part, and it was all far better than we expected.”

She added: “Not only was it one of the best fundraisers we have run, but it gave us a chance to spread the word about the church and to show people around it.

"We also had information about the convent which was new even to some of our own parishioners.

"Although the gardens were spread throughout the town, a surprising number of people walked around them all, to get an impression of what Melton Mowbray is like. If we do it again, we hope even more people will join in and open their gardens."