Below you will find:
- the latest messages and news for Quiet Garden Hosts,
- information about your Quiet Garden details and membership of the Quiet Garden Movement,
- and important guidance information and resources.
News and Messages for Hosts
Firstly a message from our Chair of Trustees – Revd Kate Lawson:
Dear Garden Hosts
It is with sadness to inform you, that as a board of trustees, we have had to come to the very difficult decision, to make the post of Project Manager redundant. This is entirely due to financial reasons, made much worse by the Covid lockdown, closing Quiet Gardens.
Matt has been with us for six years, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for all his hard work, and especially for bringing the Quiet Garden Movement and its website into the 21st century.
He is back with us today, having been furloughed for two months, and is with us until the end of September.
Many Blessings at this difficult time
We hope that you are keeping safe and well. The email that was intended for June was not sent (my error) so sincere apologies for that; we haven’t forgotten you. Some of you will be thinking about re-opening your gardens; in particular those of you who Host gardens in public spaces. Matt is busy creating some resources in readiness for Gardens to open; we pray, that by October, we can celebrate together, the re-opening of our Quiet Gardens across the world
If you are considering re-opening your garden now – please do keep in touch with us so that we can assist by letting others know of your plans. Remember please only do this if you think it is safe to do so. Please click on the link for advice.
It’s vital we tune in to the latest facts and use these to guide us towards the wisest and kindest actions. It is very clear that how effectively a society responds makes a big difference. We have enjoyed sharing some Virtual Quiet Days with hosts and thank you fo keeping in touch with your news and pictures.
We have also created a we are open poster. We encourage you to display this when your garden re-opens. It contains a QR code linking to our website.
It is important for us to continue to raise our awareness so any pictures, quotes, poetry, prayers about how you have withstood the past months will be very gratefully received.
With warm wishes
1. Covid-19 and sharing Quiet Gardens
Wherever you are in the world you will be affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and will be altering your Quiet Garden access and events appropriately following your national government advice. In the UK, and much of Europe, we are currently in a lockdown requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes.
Some Quiet Gardens in public spaces will still be accessible for a very limited number of people taking their one form of exercise a day, but the vast majority of Quiet Gardens will not be accessible at this time. We have added site wide messages on our website explaining this, which should minimise the need for you to update the details for your Quiet Garden page.
2. Our collective creative response
At this difficult time when anxiety levels are high we have been exploring ways in which the Quiet Garden Movement can respond, and share our collective resources of resilience and hope.
We believe sharing something of our Quiet Gardens online at this time will be beneficial for our collective wellbeing and the future of the Movement. It may be a prayer or poem you have written along with a photograph. It could be a short video of your garden space and soundscape, or an audio reflection you’d like to share from your garden.
We are inviting all Quiet Garden hosts to contribute in this way.
We know that there are lots of creative responses online at the moment, and we are happy to share some content that you have found helpful from elsewhere, but ideally we are asking you to send original content that is supportive, hope filled, and shares something of your Quiet Garden.
Please send them to us in the coming days and weeks, and we will share them far and wide via our email list and social media channels.
To receive what others contribute follow the channels above and ensure you are subscribed to our news email list.
3. Supporting one another
We want the Quiet Garden community to support one another where we can, and already have the Hosts Group on Facebook to help with this – join at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/QGHosts/
If you have other ideas or suggestions for ways you’d like to connect with Hosts or the Movement more widely at this time please do let us know and we will set things up where we can.
4. The future
It is clear that the Covid-19 pandemic is going to keep changing our world for some time to come. The timeframe and knock-on impacts are hard to predict at the moment – with the only certainty being that the world will look different in the future.
As you know the Quiet Garden Trust was already struggling financially, and we know having so many Quiet Gardens closed at a time when the majority have most of their visitors will not help this. In the next couple of weeks we will be asking for annual donations from Quiet Gardens – and while we know this is an uncertain time, we hope you will understand the need for us to continue to do that in the normal way, and help see us through to better times.
The Quiet Garden Trust office is continuing to run, with Matt and Sarah both working from home. The trustees met last week virtually and decided to postpone the production of our next Pause newsletter, but instead enable virtual sharing from our Quiet Gardens as explained above.
Please do stay in touch, continue doing what you need to do to keep yourselves and those near you safe, and we look forward to sharing our Quiet Gardens in new ways online over the coming days and weeks.
1. Coronavirus – Advice for Hosts and Visitors
As you will be aware the situation with COVID-19 is presenting big challenges for people all over the world – and will effect how you open your Quiet Garden. We have written some advice for Quiet Gardens on COVID-19, otherwise known as Cronoavirus – COVID-19-Advice-for-Hosts PDF. At this difficult time, we can each play a vital role in helping to reduce the impact and look after ourselves and each other. It’s vital we tune in to the facts and use these to guide us towards the wisest and kindest actions. It is very clear that how effectively a society responds makes a big difference.
Whilst you may decide to cancel events in your Quiet Garden, access to Quiet Gardens will continue to be important for peace, and well-being. You may, therefore, wish to consider making you garden accessible in different ways, for example for individuals to drop in.
Whilst there are going to be many challenges in the months to come, there will also be many opportunities to support others and consider running your Quiet Garden differently. We hope the advice is helpful, and encourage you to keep up-to-date on advice from the government and take the necessary precautions to keep yourself and your visitors safe.
2. Annual Day – 21 June 2020
Also as you may have noticed we got the date wrong in the last email reminding you about the Quiet Garden Annual Day – this year it is on Sunday 21 June 2020. We encourage you to mark it in some way and use it to raise awareness of your Quiet Garden locally and the wider Movement.
It was great to hear Quiet Gardens mentioned in BBC Radio 4 Sunday Worship on 1st March when they marked St David’s Day in a meditative reflection on the theme of Light and Energy, with Beryl Edwards sharing from the Quiet Garden she hosts at Eglwys St Michael Llanfihangel Rhos-Y-Corn in Wales.
“This is our quiet garden, part of the quiet garden movement. It’s set in a hollow beside the church where people have gathered together in prayer over the centuries. The garden is a place of contemplation, and as we walk the labyrinth, even as the wind blows, we are invited to return to the still point at the centre of our being.
God of creation, we pray that your light would illuminate our minds. God of love, we pray that your joy would lift our hearts. God of mercy, we pray that your care would inspire our actions.”
Visitor surveys and numbers
We encourage Quiet Garden Hosts to keep a record of the number of visitors to their space and to encourage visitors to complete a short survey about their visit. The reason for asking for both of these is to help us make informed decisions and improvements and to plan for the future of the Movement.
Following our request in December for your numbers we have now collated the data you shared. A summary of the 2019 results, as well as recently updated advice on how to record visitor numbers, can be found here – please do take time to have a look. We hope that it will encourage you to collect this information this coming year, and to share the visitor survey with those that use your space.
You may remember that we are not holding an Annual Gathering this year, but instead encouraging Quiet Garden Hosts to organise a get together through regional gatherings. In the UK we currently know of plans to hold one near Brighton (date yet to be confirmed), and in Edinburgh on 3rd October.
If you are willing to help organise a regional gathering in your area please do let us know.
Also as you plan your year, a reminder that the Quiet Garden Annual Day this year is on Sunday 21 June 2020. We encourage you to mark it in some way and use it to raise awareness of your Quiet Garden locally and the wider Movement.
Could your Quiet Garden space or local community spaces you are connected with benefit from free trees to plant? The Woodland Trust in the UK offer free tree packs to schools and communities on land that is publicly accessible. Even if your land is not eligible for the free scheme, you can buy tree packs, or take advantage of subsidised tree packs. Find out more
If you have news from your Quiet Garden to share, resource suggestions and book reviews, please do let us know so we can include it in the next newsletter or on the website. We always welcome sharing news and updates about your events, experiences and resources you’ve found helpful.
Finally, a reminder that you can find links to all the Quiet Garden Host resources on the regularly updated Hosts Admin Hub – which includes safeguarding, insurance, health and safety advice that all Quiet Garden Hosts should check and consider at least annually.
- Details for your Quiet Garden
The public details for your Quiet Garden can be found by searching for your garden here – this is the dedicated webpage for your Quiet Garden, where the public will find contact details, as well as a description of your space and what you offer to visitors and how you open. It can also include whether you have a labyrinth or offer accommodation, as well as a map indicating where you are, and up to 5 landscape photographs. Please take a moment to visit your webpage and check the details are still correct.
We also hold contact details specifically for you as a host on our private secure database, which we use to contact you, primarily by email a few times a year with specific news for hosts, and by post twice a year with our newsletter. If your postal address, email or telephone number change please do let us know.
If any of the above needs updating at any point in the year you can let us know or follow the instructions on the Hosts Admin Hub > Amend Details.
- Your events in 2020
If you would like details of your Quiet Garden programme and events included in the Events Calendar on the website, please send us details by &su=Add%20QG%20Events">email at anytime or follow the instructions on the Hosts Admin Hub > Add Events.
The Postcode Local Trust provides project based funding in the UK for local projects working on the themes of, “Improving biodiversity & green spaces, Increasing community access to outdoor space and Combatting climate change & promoting sustainability”. We understand some won’t want to apply for lottery generated funding but others will be happy to apply. If you have a local Quiet Garden project you’d like to apply for funding their next deadline for applications is 10th March – further details at: postcodelocaltrust.org.uk
Psalm 23 Garden
We thought you’d be interested to know that the Bible Society are launching a ‘Psalm 23 Garden’ at this years Chelsea Flower Show, with the aim of inspiring communities, churches and schools to create their own Psalm 23-based gardens…. Continue reading. For more details visit psalm23garden.co.uk.
BBC visit Reflections Quiet Garden, Staffordshire
Last year the BBC1 series “Walks of Life” visited the Reflections Quiet Garden in Staffordshire as part of an episode following the “The Two Saints Way” pilgrimage route. The garden is designed as a sequence of 5 small gardens themed on the spiritual journey and environmental care. Watch it on our website.
Display Board Project
We are currently looking at developing new display boards for permanent and temporary use in Quiet Gardens. These display boards would primarily be aimed at those Quiet Gardens in public spaces that want to invite people to use the space and equip them with prayer and meditation practices to use in the Quiet Garden.
The display boards will enable Quiet Gardens to provide a welcoming and supportive resource to visitors. They will also point to the wider welcome of the local community running the Quiet Garden, as well as support services and the wider Quiet Garden Movement. The boards will include a prayer practice and simple prayer for people to use themselves, as well as links to audio practices and prayers that people can access via a mobile phone.
We are applying for funding to help with the development of these boards, and it would be very helpful to know if your Quiet Garden would be interested in installing one? We do not yet know about costs, but it would be envisaged that installation costs would be covered locally and that we may be able to access some funding towards the production costs of the boards. Expressing an interest now would help us estimate numbers and potential impact, which will be crucial in funding bids towards the project.
Please indicate your interest by contacting us with the name of your Quiet Garden. Your response would not commit you but will guide us in planning and funding raising.
Number of people spending time in your Quiet Garden
As we come to the end of the year, we’d be grateful for your estimates of the number of visits to your Quiet Garden, where possible. We appreciate that the estimate may be very approximate or not possible for all Quiet Gardens, such as those with 24 hour open access. By asking for these numbers we are not, of course, implying that more is better! Each Quiet Garden is unique and offers different types of quiet space which is valued by individuals or groups. Your estimate of numbers provides a rough indication of the use of Quiet Gardens which is helpful in reporting to the Charity Commission and possible funders.
If you can please do let Sarah know how many people came to your Quiet Garden each time it was open in 2019? Simply email Sarah at or for further details and help visit the Hosts Admin Hub at www.quietgarden.org/hosts-admin/visitor-numbers/.
Update to Trustees
We are delighted that at our recent Trustees Meeting it was agreed to welcome Jacqueline Fudge (Host of The Quiet Garden at Clearwell) and Patrick Swan (Garden Designer and long term supporter of Quiet Gardens) to join the Board as Trustees. Details of all our current Trustees can be found at: https://quietgarden.org/about/people/
Your Quiet Garden Details and Membership
Find your Quiet Garden page
Each Quiet Garden has its own page on our website, with details of your garden, photos, a map and contact details. Any events you register with us will also appear on the page. When we contact you we’ll provide a link to the page – and you can find your Quiet Garden page by using the location or name / keyword search facilities.
Go to Find Gardens
Amending details on your Quiet Garden page
Once a year we ask you to check the details on your Quiet Garden page – you can notify us of changes you want to be made at any time.
Go to Amend Details
Numbers of people using Quiet Gardens
Towards the end of each year we contact Quiet Garden Hosts for an indication of the number of people that have spent time in their Quiet Garden that year. This can be an estimate and helps us in reporting the wider impact of the Movement and Charity.
Annual Quiet Garden Donation
Every year we ask Quiet Garden Hosts for an annual donation towards the costs of running the Affiliate and Associate Quiet Garden schemes. Find out more about this request and how and when to make a donation.
Resources and Guidance for Hosts
Information and Guidance for Quiet Garden Hosts
Each Quiet Garden is unique and responds to local needs and circumstances, and the different types of garden open in different ways, however, when it comes to safety, insurance, safeguarding and data privacy there are some important issues to be aware of and consider.
Go to Information and Guidance
Welcome Pack for Quiet Garden Hosts
Links to the latest versions of all the contents of the Welcome Pack which is sent to every Quiet Garden Host when they first join.
Go to Welcome Pack
Quiet Garden logo
Versions of the Quiet Garden logo that you may find helpful to use in any publicity about your Quiet Garden.
Go to Quiet Garden Logo
Further resources for Hosts are also available from the general Resources Section of the website.
Go to Resources Section
Quiet25 Leader’s Guide and Course on Silence
Designed to help hosts run a course, or as the basis for a one-day course, or individual workshops. Copy included in the Welcome Pack.
Quiet Garden Leaflet
Copies of the general Quiet Garden Leaflet, which you can add your own details to, can be ordered from us at anytime.
Go to Quiet Garden Leaflet
Questions and Comments
If you have any questions or comments not covered above please contact us.
Go to Contact Us
“Thank you for being a host. This role, as you will know, calls for an expression of warm hospitality, a quiet prayerfulness, a love of God and a love of neighbour. It is a fruit-bearing ministry in so many ways.
Peoples’ lives and faith journeys are often touched, deepened and restored by the welcome and resourcing provided by you, and by members of your co-ordinating or planning group. Your home and garden are precious to you and offer a sanctuary space to others who, regularly or occasionally, join you in your Quiet Garden. Thank you…”
Philip Roderick – Founder – Quiet Garden Movement