Press Releases


Gardens Remain Open, 10am TO 5pm

New Owners After winning a raft of awards as one of Somerset’s top tourist attractions, the owners of the internationally famous gardens at East Lambrook Manor have decided to step aside to spend more time with their 3 young children.

These famous gardens were created by the gardening icon, Margery Fish in the 1950’s and her creation here at East Lambrook Manor was responsible for revolutionising gardening in the 20th century. The last decade has seen the gardens restored and the number of national and international visitors flourish. The new owners, Mike & Gail Werkmeister, will take residence in August this year and come with a passion for plants which will further enrich these famous gardens. The staff and the wonderful group of volunteers who work tirelessly will now be able to enjoy the next stage in the history of these famous gardens. Marianne Williams, the present owner, says “after devoting 10 years of our life to this magical place, it is with a happy heart that we see it pass on to Mike and Gail and we know that in their hands it will continue to give inspiration and joy to visitors for many years to come”

Mike and Gail will keep the gardens open to the public and will further develop the famous Margery Fish Plant Nursery which has specialised in rare and unusual plants since its creation in the 1950’s. The gardens have also become a valuable educational establishment for horticultural students, and in partnership with Yeovil College, students will continue to take part in a wide selection of courses taught by expert tutors. Prospectus for 2008/09 courses can be obtained by calling or emailing East Lambrook Manor on 01460 240328 or

The gardens remain open 7 days per week from 10am to 5pm and visitors can see the art exhibition by well known local artist, Moish Sokal, starting Saturday 31st May 2008 and running on until Thursday 17th July 2008. More information on these important gardens can be obtained by looking at the website

For more information please contact:
Marianne Williams on
01460 240328 or

December 2006
Somerset jewel, East Lambrook Manor Gardens, leads the way again for quality West Country tourist attractions!

Somerset is now the county for quality West Country tourist attractions - finally stealing the lime-light from Devon and Cornwall! And East Lambrook Manor Gardens is the jewel in Somerset’s crown having won a total of 4 top awards in 2006.

BBC personality, Sally Challoner, presented the latest award, Somerset Tourism Business of the Year 2006, to owners, Rob and Marianne Williams, “this has been a staggering achievement for us and our team, and shows that tourists wanting quality now have a real reason to visit, stay and spend money in Somerset!”

In addition, East Lambrook Manor Gardens showed the judges that a tourist attraction could also be an exceptional business venue with many clients coming from top UK companies and institutions to use the excellent array of facilities in wonderful surroundings. “Our business clients want a unique environment with top customer service, superb food and state of the art technology – all our visitors, whether business or tourist have FREE wireless access to the internet – we are in the forefront of bridging that gap between business and tourism” says Marianne.

East Lambrook Manor also won the South West Tea Room & Café of the Year 2006 from Taste of the West, making this the premier tea room in the whole of the West Country; Gold Award 2006 from Taste of the West for best tea room in Somerset; and finally South West Tourism Excellence Silver Award for Small Visitor Attraction of the Year 06/07, beating countless entries from all over the West Country.

Marianne says, “Our focus is giving wonderful customer service in beautiful Somerset surroundings with the best local food – simple, special, and utterly unique.”

October 2006:
Somerset is the ‘Best in the West’ for Food!

The UK and the rest of the world can now Taste of the West Winners 06recognize Somerset as a premier destination for food and the serving of delicious local produce! Visitors can now eat at the best tea rooms, cafes, restaurants and pubs in the whole of the South West region here in our wonderful county.

Taste of the West sent secret judges to evaluate establishments all over the West Country, visiting each establishment on 3 separate occasions, and the panel finally found that the best Tea Room & Café, the best Restaurant and the best Pub were all here in Southern Somerset. East Lambrook Manor Gardens, which has won best Somerset Tea Room in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006 has now also swept the ultimate prize of South West Tea Room/Café of the Year, while Truffles in Bruton won South West Restaurant of the Year, and the Montague Inn in Shepton Montague, Wincanton, took the accolade for South West Pub of the Year.

“it was such an incredible honor to receive this award” said East Lambrook Manor Gardens owner, Marianne Williams, “and it is final recognition that Somerset is the premier county for cuisine and local food - these awards can only mean good for the local economy as visitors will stop to sample our delights instead of driving straight through our county onto Devon and Cornwall – after all, it would seem that Somerset is now the definitive place to stop for a cream tea instead of Devon!”

15th August 2006

Bringing Flavours of the World to Somerset

In celebration of British Food Fortnight and Somerset Food Festival East Lambrook Manor Gardens are holding a Food Tasting Weekend in association with The Gustomarket on Saturday 30th September and Sunday 1st October 2006.
Following the success of the last year’s event here at East Lambrook Manor Gardens we have extended the fair to two days. During these two days food entertainment & flavours from Somerset, Dorset and the rest of the World will be brought to us by the Gusto Market and Local West Country Suppliers.
Our local West Country suppliers will be giving visitors the opportunity to taste and purchase a huge array of delicious West Country foods direct from the makers. You can talk to the producers and see first hand the superb quality of local foods available. There will be many delicious items available from olives and pestos to chocolates, wines beers and homemade pasta, plus many more delights.

The Food Fair Weekend will be taking place on Saturday 30th September and Sunday 1st October, at East Lambrook Manor Gardens from 11am – 4pm each day.
All visitors will have free entry to the Grade I listed gardens during this weekend and our award winning tearooms will also be open from 10am- 5pm with a range of special Somerset dishes on our menu along with our ever popular selections

August 2006

The Somerset Mystery of the Stolen Statues…

79 year old Sukey Erland is exhibiting again for Somerset Art Weeks at East Lambrook Manor Gardens despite having many of her collectable and irreplaceable sculptures stolen from the gardens here at East Lambrook Manor in 2004.

“We are sure that someone stole the stunning statues to order, and they were taken in the dead of night across a neighbours garden – it was all very well planned – and the statues have never been seen again. It was devastating for Sukey who works for months on each of her valuable sculptures.” says East Lambrook Manor’s owner, Marianne Williams

But since then Sukey has defied the thieves and has again produced a stunning show of new work which will be on display under lock and key at East Lambrook Manor Gardens for the new Somerset Art Weeks shows starting on Saturday 9th September until Sunday 24th September 2006.

Sukey will be one of six different artists and craftsmen exhibiting at this popular venue and visitors will be able to see pottery, print making, jewellery and even hand crafted glass work as well as the sculpture.

The Somerset Art Weeks show and the award winning tea room at East Lambrook Manor Gardens will be open every day from 10am to 5pm from Saturday 9th to Sunday 24th September and you can find out more details on the website

February 2006.

New Snowdrop Discovery

East Lambrook Manor, the ‘Home of English Cottage Gardening’, has been the site of a Galanthus Henry B-Cnew snowdrop discovery, galanthus ‘Sir Henry B-C’. This new variety was discovered by gardeners at East Lambrook Manor and was confirmed by galanthus expert, Matt Bishop, as an exciting addition to the already rare and extensive snowdrop collection in these famous Somerset Gardens.

The snowdrop has been named ‘Sir Henry B-C’ after Sir Henry Boyd- Carpenter who was Margery Fish’s nephew and who spent much of his childhood growing up her at East Lambrook Manor. He was very close to both Margery and her husband, Walter, and indeed, Margery left the entire East Lambrook Manor estate to Henry on her death. So, when the new galanthus variety was first discovered hiding amongst a clump of a snowdrop called galanthus ‘Walter Fish’, the gardeners felt that it was right to name the new variety after Henry who was almost like a son to Walter Fish.

This new addition to the ‘galanthus’ collection is a wonderfully elegant and hardy variety displaying graceful long white petals, each with a stunning green spot at the end, while the centre has pretty green markings trimmed with lacy white edges.

East Lambrook Manor has become a site of pilgrimage for snowdrop enthusiasts from all over the world and continues to be one of the few places in the UK where people can view such a diverse collection of snowdrops at close quarters.

August 2005

Local West Country Food Helps to Win Award for Famous Somerset Tea Shop for Third Consecutive Year!

The Tea Shop at East Lambrook Manor Gardens has again taken the highest accolade awarded in Somerset from Taste of the West for the third consecutive year!

Each year the independent industry judges have been delighted not only by the high standard of food, but also by the exceptional use of local produce. Every dish in the lunch menu uses food grown or made in Somerset & the West Country, from award winning local cheeses, to Dorset smoked chicken & mackerel, traditional Somerset cider from the local farm, award winning Wiltshire ham, and even delicious soups made especially for East Lambrook Manor by the award winning Dorset Blue Soup Company using vegetables in season from their surrounding farms.

And East Lambrook Manor is helping to put the joys of West Country foods firmly on the British culinary map by spreading the word to thousands of national and international tourists each year, “ We are lucky that we have thousands of visitors who come to see our grade I listed gardens and this gives us a fantastic opportunity to shout about the amazing foods on offer in this part of England – we are so privileged to have such a diverse selection of top quality produce and we want everyone who visits to be excited by the taste of good local West Country food.” says owner, Marianne Williams . “ We are delighted that East Lambrook has triumphed again at these awards. Success in awards such as this really helps to promote South Somerset as a quality visitor destination. ” Claire Onslow, Tourism Manager, South Somerset.

Again this year the Silver award was the highest accolade to be given in Somerset and was awarded to East Lambrook Manor Gardens. Open daily 10am – 5pm.

14th May 2005

Somerset’s New Plant Discovery!

A brand new Geranium has been discovered Lambrook Helenhere in Somerset, by plant propagator, Tom Wild. He has donated this new rare plant to the famous East Lambrook Manor Gardens, who’s experienced staff have a long history of discovering and nurturing new and rare plants.

Tom has been working with plants for over 20 years and has worked alongside the National Collection of Hardy Geraniums up until last year. Owner, Marianne Williams says, “It is a dream to find a completely new form of geranium, and this one is such a wonderful vivid pink colour and is so easy to grow, being very hardy and with a fantastic long flowering period from May right through to October – it will suit any type of garden and is a real Somerset treasure”. Tom was asked to name the new discovery and decided to call it ‘Lambrook Helen’ after the garden here at East Lambrook, where he has worked for many years, and after his future wife, Helen. Marianne went on to say, “it has the ability to change colour in the full sun, becoming an even more intense pink colour and is so wonderfully maintenance free – every garden owners dream!”

He initially found the lucky ‘freak’ seedling in a garden in Barrington village in Somerset and has now managed to grow a limited number of these rare plants for sale here at the Margery Fish Plant Nursery at East Lambrook Manor.

Gardens and Margery Fish Plant Nursery are open daily from 10am to 5pm

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