Hanbury Hall’s Gardens and Outdoors Manager, Neil Cook, tells us why he loves his Keder Greenhouses at the popular National Trust property.

Hanbury Hall is an impressive, Grade 1 listed, early 18th Century stately home, in the William and Mary style. It was taken over by the National Trust in 1953 and extensively restored. Magnificent gardens surround the house and have been faithfully re-created in the original style. Neil Cook has been Gardens & Outdoors Manager for 35 years.

The first Keder that Hanbury Hall invested in was a 4m x 10m. This was installed in June 2006 and is used as a dedicated propagation house for all the plants supplying not only Hanbury Hall, but also the local National Trust properties Rosedene Cottage and Greyfriars House & Garden.

Neil confirmed he has been extremely pleased with the Keder and it is still in great condition after 17 years. It was installed onto a concrete base and benefits from drop sided ventilation, with netting.

Having been so impressed with the original greenhouse, Hanbury Hall opted to invest in a second, larger 4m x 20m unit in December 2009. Unlike the dedicated propagation house, this second greenhouse has multiple uses. Most recently it has been used as a quarantine house (currently housing lavender plants with a 6-week quarantine period) but is also used for growing on fruit and vegetables, and as a home for the property’s chickens over the Winter months.

The quarantine house is particularly important as it meets the guidelines set by DEFRA and the drop sided ventilation and netting stops birds from getting to the quarantined plants.

According to Neil, no damage has been caused at all by the housing of the chickens and both greenhouses are in remarkably good condition, given that there has been little or no maintenance.

Neil has been very impressed with the Keder product on many levels. “They have much better insulation, and during the increasingly hot Summer months, the ventilation is better, with drop down sides and through doors. We also like the straight sides of the greenhouse, meaning we can grow tall plants right to the edge and it gives us more useable space. The strong structure also allow us to hold plants up too.”

He finished with a simple observation, “they really are just ‘fit and forget’. They do a great job and I don’t have to worry about them at all”.