Plans for secret garden in Dorset revealed

Careys Secret Garden <i>(Image: PA)</i>
Careys Secret Garden (Image: PA)

CHANGES have been agreed at the Carey Secret Garden, Wareham, to include an area for plant sales and refreshments.

Dorset Council has approved a retrospective planning application to build a timber garden storage shed within the walled garden, to us a barn for educational purposes associated with biodiversity and sustainable horticulture and to build a compostable toilet.

Another of the existing buildings, described as a “bothy”, forming part of the garden wall, will be used for the sale of teas and snacks as well as plants.

The site, which is part of the Carey House grounds, around two miles from Wareham, is used by local residents, charities and community organisations.

Said a planning agent in the request for the changes: “The application will enable the continued operation of this highly valued, low key, educational and horticultural facility as a high quality and environmentally sustainable operation that preserves and enhances the character of the garden, including within its wider setting of the listed Carey House. The works are of a modest scale, and will involve the reuse of existing, attractive structures as well as new additions which will help safeguard the future of the garden whilst being sensitive to its historic context.”

The site employs two full time staff, two full time apprentices and a part time project manager and is only open to pre-arranged visits for small groups. The site also offers courses for up to 14 people with a focus on connecting to nature and caring for the environment in a sustainable way.

Wareham St Martin parish council raised no objection to the changes with a Humber Chase resident writing to say that he was becoming increasingly concerned at the number of applications for changes to the site which would encourage more public events.

“The road to this property is not an easy route with no lighting or markings and very fast … When will this be thought out and addressed properly? I for one have had near misses with speeding vehicles driving around blind bends in the middle of the road, it can only get worse,” he said.