Following the positive role played by garden centres during the initial lockdown, I’m very pleased to report that we will be able to stay open over the coming weeks.

The government has recognised garden centres as essential retailers, which will allow us to continue providing the products and services that can enhance your time spent at home and in the garden.

Our three restaurants will of course have to close temporarily from Thursday 5 November, but The Apple Tree Farm Shop at Brimsmore Gardens will remain open and well-stocked with local food and drink during this period.

Since reopening back in May, we have established a comprehensive set of systems and measures designed to keep both staff and customers safe.

These include separate entrance and exit doors, one-way systems, additional space, reorganised displays to avoid congestion, hand sanitising points throughout and screens at the tills, where we request card payments wherever possible. We also benefit from a great deal of open and airy space within all of our garden centres, which is hugely beneficial to our ventilation and social distancing efforts.

So many people have discovered or rediscovered the joys of gardening this year, one of the few positives to come out of the crisis, so I’m delighted that people can continue benefiting from all the physical and mental benefits that this activity can bring.

It will be a challenging few months ahead, but the team at The Gardens Group will be doing everything possible to make your time that bit happier, healthier and more productive, while providing a safe environment for all.