The former gardener to The Queen and HRH Prince of Wales, Robert Dunster, has joined us here at Berwick Lodge in Bristol, to help redesign and develop the hotel’s 18 acres of gardens and woodland.

Robert has over 40 years’ experience having begun his horticultural training back in 1975 when he became an apprentice at The Queen’s Windsor Castle gardens.  Since then, Robert has worked as a gardener in some of the UK’s most prestigious country houses and estates, including eight years as Deputy Head Gardener for Prince Charles, at his organic gardens at Highgrove in Gloucestershire.

Robert has always been interested in organic gardening, long before it became popular in the UK.  He spent some time in the USA studying organic gardening methods and he is looking to use organic gardening principles at Berwick Lodge.

Berwick Lodge, which is set in its own secluded formal gardens and woodlands, is a much sought after venue for brides and grooms who are seeking a scenic and secluded location for their wedding.  Robert has plans to develop the Hotel’s formal plant borders and to redesign the kitchen garden, to provide the Hotel’s renowned 2 AA rosette restaurant Hattusa, with a supply of fresh herbs and vegetables.

Robert has already begun work on replanting and is introducing more scented perennials and shrubs to provide year-round interest for the Hotel guests. He also has a keen interest in supporting the UK’s endangered wild bee population, and hopes to introduce some wild bee colonies into Berwick Lodge’s woodland.

When Berwick Lodge was originally built back in the late 1890s as a private manor house, it boasted some of the County’s finest rose gardens and woodlands, which attracted admirers from all over the South West. Speaking about his plans Robert said, “I am delighted to join the team at Berwick Lodge and to have the opportunity to develop these beautiful gardens and woodlands in this historic property. We have lots of ideas for the coming years, and ultimately, we aim to restore Berwick Lodge’s gardens into a must visit destination once again.”

Watch this space for even more beautiful gardens, or come up and see the progress for yourself!