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Visit Dog Friendly Snowdrop Gardens

Banish grey days with your Greyhound and step into Spring 2012 with your Springer Spaniel by visiting one of Britain's best snowdrop gardens with your dog.

North West

There are snowdrop walks daily (except Mondays) from 28th January to 11th March at Rode Hall in Cheshire www.rodehall.co.uk. Dogs are welcome on leads.

North East

Wander through a carpet of snowdrops on a woodland walk in the grounds of Burton Agnes Hall in East Yorkshire www.burtonagnes.com.The Snowdrop Spectacular runs from 4th February to 4th March and dogs on leads are welcome in the grounds only.

South

The grounds of Welford Park in Berkshire www.welfordpark.co.uk are open Wednesday to Sunday from 26th January to view the Spring Gardens and magnificent carpets of snowdrops. Dogs are welcome on a lead in the park and in the outside tented area of the tearoom so you can stop for a cuppa with your dog after your walk.

Gatton Park in Surrey www.gattonpark.com is the core 260 acres of the Gatton estate and us made up of gardens and parkland. The park is open to see the snowdrops on the 5th and 12th February and the 4th March. There are also daily snowdrop tours on the week of the 13th February. Dogs on a lead are welcome in the park and gardens.

Dogs are welcome in the woodland grounds of Lacock Abbey in Wiltshire www.nationaltrust.org.uk from 1st November to 31st March.

South West

Every Saturday and Sunday in February is Snowdrop weekend at Forde Abbey in Devon www.fordeabbey.co.uk. The estate is very dog friendly as dogs on a lead are welcome in the garden and tearoom.
Many of the snowdrops at Hartland Abbey in Devon www.hartlandabbey.co.uk were planted many hundreds of years ago and stretch from the Walled Gardens to the sea. Beautiful paths lead visitors around the gardens and through the woods to Blackpool Mill, a remote cove on the Atlantic coast. Dogs on leads are very welcome to come and enjoy their walkies on Snowdrop Weekend on 11th and 12th February.

There is a Park and Ride scheme from Wheddon Cross to Snowdrop Valley in Exmoor www.wheddoncross.org.uk to enable visitors to reach the valley without having to take their cars down the narrow country lanes that lead to it. Dogs are allowed on the bus at the driver's discretion.

South East

The idyllic Gardens of Easton Lodge in Essex www.eastonlodge.co.uk are being restored to their former glory by a team of dedicated volunteers. Why not visit after your Sunday lunch on Snowdrop Sundays 19th and 26th February? Dogs on leads are welcome.

Midlands

Evenley Wood Garden in Northamptonshire www.evenleywoodgarden.co.uk is a 60 acre woodland garden set amongst the beautiful Northamptonshire countryside. The garden is open to see the snowdrops on 12th, 13th, 19th and 20th February. Dogs on a lead are welcome.

East

The display of naturalised snowdrops at Chippenham Park, Cambridgeshire www.chippenhamparkgardens.info is probably the finest in East Anglia. The many acres of woodland and lakeside gardens are carpeted with white for several weeks. Well behaved dogs are welcome on a lead.

The grounds of Walsingham Abbey in Norfolk www.walsinghamabbey.com are famous for the spectacular ruins of the mediaeval priory and an unrivalled display of snowdrops in nearly 20 acres of woodland in February. Dogs on leads are welcome and the grounds are open daily from 4th February to 4th March.

West

Colesbourne Park in Gloucestershire www.snowdrop.org.uk has been called 'England's greatest snowdrop garden' by Country Life. Now with a collection of 250 varieties, visitors can enjoy the snowdrops throughout the ten acre garden with its woodland and lakeside paths, the Spring Garden and Formal Garden, alongside drifts of cyclamen, hellebores and other winter plants. Open weekends from Saturday 4th February to Sunday 4th March. Dogs are welcome on a short lead.

Batsford Arboretum in Gloucestershire www.batsarb.co.uk begins to come to life with the delicate snowdrops crowding the roots of old oak trees and clinging to the grassy banks of the stream. Clouds of white blooms made colourful by a scattering of bright yellow winter aconites and mauve crocus decorate the winter glades.

The Painswick Rococo Garden in Gloucestershire www.rococogarden.co.uk has one of the largest naturalistic plantings of snowdrops in the country. There are many species of snowdrops including early flowering giant snowdrops. The garden is open daily and dogs are welcome on leads.

Scotland

There are 70 acres of woodland awash with snowdrops at Cambo Gardens in Fife, Scotland www.camboestate.com The snowdrops can be enjoyed from 1st February to 13th March and dogs are welcome on leads. Visitors can also book onto tours to see the Snowdrops by Starlight. These trips are very popular with families and run from 11th to 27th February.

Louise Dolan
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