Green Fingered Work Experience at Valentines

The gardens at Valentines are a hub of activity at the moment. Seeds have been sown for delicious fruits and vegetables in the kitchen gardens, and beds have been prepared for a variety of spring and summer blooms.

It’s been the perfect time for our latest work experience student to join the gardening team for lots of practical experience in one of the most interesting gardens in the borough.

Sarah Monk, a student from Capel Manor College in Enfield will spend the next five weeks shadowing the Valentines Park Gardening Team, getting lots of hands on experience.


“It’s been great to get stuck in! Since joining, I’ve had the chance to do lots of gardening activities, including stripping areas to prepare them for planting, pricking out seedlings and potting on. My favourite so far has been planting all the vegetables and herbs in the kitchen garden.” said Sarah. In fact, the radishes grown last week by Sarah have already started sprouting!

Now in her final year of a Level 2 City & Guilds in Horticulture, Sarah specifically chose Valentines for her practical experience. “I live locally and have been visiting the park since I was young, and have always been fond of it. The gardens are lovely and I knew I would get to learn about lots of different types of plants and flowers.”

Valentines is a great supporter of community involvement and in addition to student placements, locals groups are also given the opportunity to get green fingered and help with weeding and planting. As Simon Litt, Valentines Park Manager comments “Valentines is a much loved community resource, and it’s great to be able to get locals involved in the gardens – its gives them a hobby and the chance to meet others in a relaxed setting, and helps us by ensuring the gardens are always well kept – everyone wins”.

After her five week placement, Sarah will complete her final practical exams, after which she hopes to specialise in landscape gardening.
Watch this space for updates on Sarah’s placement!


About valentinesmansion

Discover a beautiful country house and gardens in the heart of Ilford. Visit the recreated Victorian kitchen and Georgian rooms, with gorgeous views over surrounding parkland. Enjoy contemporary art exhibitions and installations. Explore the stunning historic gardens. Bring the whole family for hands-on games, activities and discovery trails. FREE ENTRY Hire the Mansion...Valentines Mansion is a truly unique venue in a beautiful setting. With its elegant period rooms, grand staircase and enchanting walled gardens, this Grade II* listed building, is perfect for a whole host of functions, from weddings and celebrations to corporate events. The Mansion and its rooms can be hired either individually or exclusively and we work with a fine selection of caterers to ensure a first-class experience for you and your guests. Call us on 020 8708 8100 to find out more.
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