Greatham’s annual snowdrops walk attracts hundreds of visitors

Walking among the snowdrops.
Walking among the snowdrops.

Hundreds of visitors flocked to a snowdrop display as more than £1,000 was raised for an annual initiative.

A private wood owned by the Hospital of God charity, in Greatham, was opened for one afternoon only as the village held its yearly snowdrop afternoon.

Walking among the snowdrops at Greatham Hall Gardens.

Walking among the snowdrops at Greatham Hall Gardens.

The event is held every year to signal that spring is on the way and mark the start of fundraising for the Greatham in Bloom initiative, which sees the village decorated with flowers and plants.

It is thought that about 500 people attended the display as walkers followed a specially-laid-out trail through the wood.

A carpet of the white flowers was on show for visitors.

Lorraine Meakin, the secretary of the Greatham in Bloom committee, said: “The event went extremely well, so we were very pleased with it.

We’re delighted with the response of people not just in the village, but also the surrounding areas

Lorraine Meakin

“The weather certainly helped us, because it came out nice for us.

“There was a brilliant turnout and all the village turned out to help, which we’re always so appreciative of.

“We’re delighted with the response of people not just in the village, but also the surrounding areas.

“They all came out and supported us brilliantly.

Walking among the snowdrops at Greatham Hall Gardens.

Walking among the snowdrops at Greatham Hall Gardens.

“We’d like to thank them all for contributing to the village.”

The ancient Hospital of God charity, founded in 1273, specialises in the care of the elderly including those with dementia.

The snowdrop event is organised and run by volunteers from the local community and raises vital funds for the Greatham In Bloom initiative.

Lorraine estimates that the afternoon saw more than £1,000 raised through ticket sales – entry was £2 and £1 for accompanied children – as well as cake sales, a bric a brac stall and plant sales.

Walking among the snowdrops at Greatham Hall Gardens.

Walking among the snowdrops at Greatham Hall Gardens.

The funds raised have given the committee a good platform from which to make it a successful Greatham in Bloom.

Lorraine added: “This is the start of the fundraising to buy the plants for Greatham in Bloom this year.

“We’re delighted with how much we raised on the day.

“We’ll be able to get quite a few plants with that.”

Visitors were told some of the myths, legends and amazing facts about the delicate flowers at the event.

One such fact was that the snowdrop is a source of the drug Galantamine, which is useful in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other memory impairments.