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Sir Harold Hillier Gardens to welcome more visitors back


Sir Harold Hillier Gardens in Romsey is preparing to welcome more visitors back as part of a phased re-opening.


Leader of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Keith Mans said: “Visitors with annual membership to Sir Harold Hillier Gardens have been enjoying the beautiful, tranquil surroundings on site, thanks to the thorough preparations made by staff to ensure the venue could safely reopen. I was delighted to hear how well the first phase of re-opening went last week, and it was great to see them back. This means we will soon be able to welcome back more visitors, now including those without membership.”


The Gardens were temporarily closed to the public at the end of March following Government guidance on essential travel during the Coronavirus outbreak. The first phase of the re-opening saw members welcomed back on 8 June via a pre-booking system to help avoid long queues and face-to-face payment transactions. Phase two will see a limited number of online tickets available to the general public from 22 June as well as the later, daily closing time of 6pm. It will also see take-away refreshments made available to visitors.


A number of measures remain in place to maintain safe social distancing for staff and visitors. This includes reduced accessible parking, and, while some toilets will be open, the visitor pavilion, café, restaurant, gift shop, exhibition gallery and play areas remain closed until further notice.


However, takeaway hot and cold drinks will be available to purchase from the Tilia Tree Café, and the Munch Buggy at the Visitor Pavilion, between 10am and 5pm daily. Pre-wrapped food items such as sandwiches and salads can also be bought. Customers are encouraged to make card and contactless payments.


Councillor Mans added: “While we all continue to follow Government advice to control the virus, the Gardens’ 180 acres of world-renowned, trees, shrubs and hardy plants, offer people of all ages the perfect space in which to walk, explore and enjoy some fresh air and exercise. We also hope to re-introduce further services and facilities for our visitors as soon as guidance and circumstances permit.”


For information about Sir Harold Hillier Gardens visit:  http://www.hants.gov.uk/hilliergardens

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