York Gate Garden: This is when you can visit Leeds' incredible secret garden

Snowdrops at York Gate Garden
Snowdrops at York Gate Garden
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York Gate Garden is now open again for the summer season.

The one-acre 'secret garden' in Adel is one of Leeds' hidden gems and a fascinating and relaxing place to visit.

York Gate is divided into 14 separate garden rooms

York Gate is divided into 14 separate garden rooms

It re-opened for the summer season on Monday April 1 and will welcome visitors until the end of September.

Where is York Gate Garden?

It can be found on Back Church Lane, near St John's Church in Adel. Visitors can park on the lay-by on Church Lane, a five-minute walk away.

The garden entrance is accessed via the churchyard; there is a footpath that then leads to the gates.

The garden is now open for the summer season

The garden is now open for the summer season

When is it open?

Between April 1 and September 30 annually. It's closed on Fridays and Saturdays, but open every other day from 12.30-4.30pm.

How much is entry?

£6 for adults. Under 16s get free admission. Dogs are not allowed.

Head gardener David Beardall outside the house

Head gardener David Beardall outside the house

Are there refreshments?

There's a tearoom that serves light lunches, afternoon teas and cakes, including gluten-free options. There's also a plant nursery and shop.

What is the garden like?

It's only an acre in size but offers plenty to see. It is laid out in a series of 14 themed garden rooms. There is a herb garden, topiary, water features, dell, pergolas and yew hedges.

Gardener Janet Middleton at work

Gardener Janet Middleton at work

Who runs it?

A charity called Perennial, the Gardeners Royal Benevolent Society, have owned it since 1994.

What is the history of the garden?

The grounds belong to York Gate, a house which was surrounded by farmland when it was purchased by the Spencer family in 1951. Frederick Spencer laid out the garden and his son Robin developed in after his death in 1963. By the 1980s, the Arts & Crafts-inspired acre was regarded as one of the best small gardens in the world. Robin died at the age of 47 in 1982, and his mother Sybil took over the garden. She bequeathed it to Perennial on her own death in 1994. York Gate House now accommodates the tearoom, which was once the family's drawing and dining rooms.