Picturesque Hartlepool village offers rare chance to see spectacular snowdrops
A private wood in a picturesque Hartlepool village will once again be opened to the community for visitors to enjoy a walk among its stunning snowdrops.
Once a year, the Hospital of God at Greatham welcomes visitors for the annual Snowdrop Afternoon.
It gives residents and visitors the chance to marvel at the splendour of thousands of the spring flowers in Greatham Hall Gardens.
The popular event is organised by, and raises money for, Greatham In Bloom community group which is responsible for the village’s floral displays and its entry into Northumbria In Bloom every year.
Last year the village won a gold medal in the competition and the previous year it won the trophy for Best Village.
Brian Walker, chairman of the Village Bloom Committee, said: “This is our big fundraiser and this wonderful natural floral display funds the colourful flowers that grace the village streets throughout the summer.”
This year’s snowdrop walk takes place on Sunday, February 16, at 1pm-4.30pm.
A temporary trail marked out with straw will be laid through the wood, which is part of the grounds of the 747-year old Hospital of God.
Some of the myths, legends and amazing facts about the delicate flowers will also be on display including how the snowdrop is a source of the drug Galantamine which is useful in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and various other memory impairments.
The Hospital of God, founded in 1273, has always provided care for the elderly and continues today.
During the afternoon, the hospital’s Georgian chapel will also be open where occasional talks will be given on the long history of the charity.
Tickets to the walk, and refreshments, will be on sale in Greatham Community Centre on Front Street opposite the entrance to the Hospital of God.
There will also be plant and bric-a-brac stalls. Entrance is £2 for adults and £1 for accompanied children.
Visitors are advised to wear sensible shoes and the walk is regrettably unsuitable for wheelchairs.
There is free parking in the village and is on the route of the number 36 bus.