Coach Outing to two Surrey gardens, Vann and Saffron Gate

On this year’s first Summer outing, before we had even crossed the threshold of Vann garden, near Godalming, we were greeted by a breath-taking array of fritillaries. What lay beyond the garden gate was equally impressive. The spirit of Gertrude Jekyll, who had been instrumental in its design and planting, still pervaded the garden. This was reflected in the old brick paths and relaxed planting around the pond, with self-seeding cowslips and a whole panoply of spring bulbs in profusion. The owner’s comprehensive introduction included the history and development of the delightful 16th century house.
At Saffron Gate, near Cranleigh, we were more likely to remember the selection of cakes than the planting. Later in the year, the 120 clematis in flower should be well-worth seeing.