After almost a year under wraps and a half million pound facelift, a landmark Victorian Conservatory is set to be reopened by TV gardener Christine Walkden.
The 150 year old Conservatory, rumoured to have links with the world renowned Crystal Palace, is part of The Cedars Mansion House, now the centrepiece of a Retirement Village’s community on the fringes of Chorleywood.
It began life in 1865 as a Glass House where the Mansion’s owner, the then Governor of the Bank of England, housed a collection of tropical plants and exotic snakes and reptiles.
In recent years the domed Conservatory, a favourite haunt of residents of Cedars Village, had fallen foul of time and the weather with rust and damp threatening the structure.
An extensive programme of painstaking refurbishment started last Summer with experts stripping the structure back to base metal, treating and repainting it, overhauling doors and windows and upgrading the infrastructure.
The protective tarpaulins have been removed in time for the residents to stage their Royal Wedding celebrations in the Conservatory.
Celebrity gardener Christine Walkden is due to perform the official reopening of the Conservatory in front of Cedars Village residents and invited guests in the middle of May.
“The restoration of the Conservatory has been a very long and detailed process but the results are stunning,” said Village Manager Colin Foulger. “The Conservatory has always been a focal point for residents with many using it as the backdrop for getting together with friends, reading the newspapers, enjoying morning coffee and even painting. We missed not having access to it during the work but, now it’s been restored, it looks absolutely wonderful and we’re looking to showing it off at the reopening.”