Norwich’s golden gardens opened up to the public

Homeowners living in the Golden Triangle area of Norwich welcomed scores of strangers into their gardens over the weekend as part of an unusual bid to help improve services for older people.

The Golden Gardens event provided people with the opportunity to purchase programmes to allow them a look behind the gates of around 40 properties in the area and see an amazing array of beautiful gardens, as well as enjoy a range of entertainment.

The event is part of the Campaign for Later Life in Norfolk, which aims to raise awareness of the work of Age UK Norfolk and Age UK Norwich. All proceeds raised over the two days will go towards developing services for older people in our county.

Suzanne Handsley, head of corporate and individual giving for Age UK Norfolk, said: 'The idea came from wanting to have an event to raise awareness of the needs of older people in Norfolk, of which there are a large number.

'It is important that people are aware of the services we provide and how we access them. We were keen to involve the whole community and this event has just been amazing because the community has turned out in force.

'It's been so lovely just to see people in this part of the city wandering in and out of gardens, there's just been a lovely feeling throughout the Golden Triangle.'

Maggie Wheeler, a trustee of Age UK Norwich, who helped organise the first ever Golden Gardens event, said she was delighted with how it had gone.

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She said: 'It's been a runaway success. We were optimistic that people would be interested, but it's just been beyond our wildest dreams.'

So popular has Golden Gardens proved, that people have been approaching organisers to see if they can include their gardens in subsequent events.

Christine Ferris, from Town Close Road, was one of those to allow people into her garden.

She said: 'It's an ego trip – everyone is so nice.'

Are you working to improve services in your community? Call reporter Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email