The Bobarts Group

Celebrating our 10th anniversary in 2014

Over the last ten years the Bobarts patron group has provided extra financial support to the Garden and Arboretum which has enabled many projects to be completed. In our first year we supported the planting of a coppice of birch, hazel and sweet chestnut at the Arboretum; then we helped to re-landscape the area around the Lodge, which has been converted very successfully into a Visitor Centre for the education programme. In 2006, 2007 and 2008 we contributed to the appeal to buy Palmer’s Leys meadow and since then we have supported projects such as the new medicinal beds at the Garden, including interpretation boards for visitors of all ages and a detailed booklet on the use of these plants in clinical medicine. As we approach the 400th anniversary of the foundation of the Garden in 2021, the extra financial support that the Bobarts Group provides is even more important.

Members of the Bobarts enjoy all the benefits that the Friends receive, but in addition we are invited to private previews of art exhibitions at the Botanic Garden and we have our own special events organised by Jennie Turner, Helen Potts and Sarah Taylor. This year is a very exciting one with three double garden visits, including a day trip to Springhill House (left, with garden owner Penny Jacoby) and the Old Vicarage in North Oxfordshire, with coffee, lunch and tea included. Other visits have included to Corpus Christi College in Oxford (founded in 1517) to see the collection of botanical art and to have a tour of the garden in spring; and a return trip to Worcester College in Oxford, the first College garden that we visited as a group in 2004; an afternoon visit to Adwell Manor followed by tea in the garden of Dreamer's Cottage (right), the home of Piers Newth and Louise Allen (former Curators of Harcourt Arboretum and the Botanic Garden). Other visits include to Medmenham Mill, Eyford; Rockcliffe House; Crockmore House; two gardens in Iffley village with a tour of the Norman St Mary’s Church; and the University of Oxford Department of Plant Sciences with a talk on the history of plant collecting. The annual Bobarts reception was a delightful event at the Botanic Garden on a warm evening in May.


We would like to thank the owners of all the beautiful gardens and estates who open their grounds especially for us. In our small group we have the advantage of walking around the gardens with the owners or the head gardeners and enjoying special hospitality at the end of each tour.

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the Bobarts Group

If you are not already a member, please consider joining the Bobarts group in this, its 10th anniversary year.

For further information, contact the Friends’ Administrator Liz Woolley on 01865 286690,, or download an application form (right).