Welcome to The Patchworking Garden Project

Welcome to The Patchworking Garden Project which was established in 2014 to bring positive change to people’s lives through the benefits of friendship and gardening.

  • We operate in the stunning natural environment of a walled garden on the northern edge of Dorking with views to Box Hill.
  • Run entirely by volunteers we offer gardening, crafting and the opportunity to learn new skills in a safe and friendly space – or simply to sit and enjoy nature and the company of others.
  • We especially welcome those with a need because of physical or mental health conditions, learning disabilities, dementia, isolation or bereavement.
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The Patchworking Academy has been on the Pixham site since March 2020.

This week all our original students attained their Level 1 Diploma in Practical Horticulture Skills, an internationally recognised qualification from City and Guilds!

Patchworking Academy

Students now have the option to progress to Level 2 which is the benchmark for employment. Find out more about The Patchworking Academy here.

When the Academy was reviewed under the quality assurance process in the Summer of 2021, it was found to be exemplary, meeting all criteria with no action points to be addressed which is a very rare occurrence.

Congratulations to all our original students and good luck to our new students just starting.

Oh and well done us!

Patchworking Academy

We are delighted that the Patchworking Academy is now established at the Pixham site – with a new converted classroom and individual plots for our students.

The project supports up to 10 people to work towards a horticultural qualification by providing two horticultural therapists/educators, and equipment.

Huge thanks go to the following who raised funds or gave us grants:

Presentation of Queen’s Award

Patchworking Garden Project wins MBE Queens Award

Recognised for its excellence as a volunteer-led organisation, Patchworking has been praised for its support through friendship and gardening through the Queens Award.

It is the highest award given to UK volunteer groups and is equivalent to an MBE.

“It is fantastic that the efforts of all of our volunteers who are supported or supporting others has been recognised in all that they do for each other,” says Carmel O’Shea, founder of the charity.

Asked how the garden has helped them, volunteers said: “Its tranquillity, its beauty, its peace, the nature, the fun [and] the acceptance. It’s calming – it helps with my anxiety and I’m making new friends.”

The Patchworking Garden Project hosts 70 supported volunteers and 40 support volunteers working alongside each other with ages ranging from 20-88. Run entirely by these volunteers, this social horticultural project offers gardening, craft and practical garden building skills.

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