Reg charity: England and Wales (261017), Scotland (SC039907) and the Isle of Man (604).

LAST UPDATED 3rd October 2019

Read all about the 2019 trail here.

Geoff Stonebanks presented £13708 to Macmillan at a ceremony in his garden, Driftwood, on 22nd August 2019. This was the most raised for the charity in a single year and comprised monies from trail (£9163) and the balance from Geoff's own garden. In reality, with the event at Little Barn in East Dean at the end of August this total actually rose to £14413, streets ahead of previous years.

Below Christine Walkden cutting the ribbon to open the 2019 trail at Driftwood and Geoff, Ruth Leonard (Head of Volunteering Development at Macmillan) with Christine on the day.

Awaiting 2020 sponsorship but hoping it will be award winning web site

Coastal Garden Trail

TV Gardener, Christine Walkden, is our patron but cannot be present in 2020. Entry £3 per garden or £8 for a day ticket on Saturday and £8 on Sunday.

The new Macmillan Horizon Cancer Centre celebrated its 3rd birthday on 22nd November 2019.


Many gardens have steps and narrow paths meaning that disabled wheelchair access is not possible.
For advice on access across the trail, please call
01323 899296.

If you would like to take part in the 2020 trail please contact
Geoff Stonebanks
for all the details.

Below are all the gardens to date who have said they would like to take part in 2020. 4 other new gardens are also considering joining the trail along with several returning. We anticipate over 20 will open their garden gates over the weekend of the 25th and 26th July.


3 brand new gardens so far for 2020

(Including Portslade, Woodingdean, Ovingdean, Rottingdean & Saltdean)

Garden 1...... The Garden House, 5 Warleigh Road, Brighton BN1 4NT

Bridgette Saunders has kindly offered to open up her amazing garden for the trail this year. The Garden House is one of Brighton’s secret gardens This wedge of land was a thriving market garden back in the 1880’s, providing flowers and food for the local residents. We have lived here for nearly 20 years and our aim is to provide year-round interested with a selection of trees, shrubs, herbaceous borders, with annuals for cutting, along with fruit and vegetables to look and taste good We have two glass houses, rose arches, a pond and rockery which enables the Garden House to provide a learning space for creative and inspirational courses and events.

Details on The Garden House web site. The plants, many propagated at the garden, tell a story, a cutting from the Bishop of Norwich of a Hebe, purported to have been in Queen Victoria’s wedding bouquet, as well as many others from gardens we have visited where the owners have been generous! This is a friendly garden, always changing with a touch of magic to delight visitors, above all it is a slice of the country in the midst of a bustling city and we look forward to welcoming visitors

Garden 2...... 11 Rugby Road, Brighton

This little house in Brighton is home to Adam & Dan,1 pug and bundles of creativity. Now with beautiful garden, opening for the second time for Macmillan, it started as part of the Artists Open Houses, is now a must see on the Open House trail twice a year, get some great deals on original work here too over the trail weekend.

Garden 3......Cuckmere Way, Brighton

Rachel Goozee is a garden designer and has designed and built her own low maintainance garden. Its contemporary in style, with a few zones to sit and reflect, water, decks, fire pits and contemporary planting, great views and sunsets of the south downs. Pictures to follow.

Garden 4...... 26 South Avenue, Brighton

Sarah and Martin have decided to open their garden again this year too! This is their garden in spring. Sarah says, "please come and visit in summer and see the different spaces where we have planted mixed grasses and perennials, roses, coastal plants, a willow arch and vegetables. The outcome of various garden courses that I have attended! There are lots of places to sit and enjoy a cup of tea and cake made from garden produce." There is plenty of on street pay parking by the garden.

Garden 5...... Macmillan Horizon Centre, Bristol Gate,
Brighton, BN2 5BD

This is the fourth year that the new centre has been able to open for the trail. Centre manager, Geoff Brown, has agreed to open up both days, so visitors can take a look at what their donations in previous years have helped build. A member of his team will be on hand and donation buckets on display. The coffee shop will be open and visitors pay by donation too! There is a very small garden area and an amazing living roof to be seen!

Garden 6......27 Balsdean Road, Woodingdean

Beryl & Alan Brown will be opening their garden again in 2020. Take home-made tea and cake in the garden or on the terrace outside the Summer house. You can even visit the secret garden down the side of the property! A long garden with established trees and shrubs and a sun trap in the afternoon.

Garden 7...... 33 Wivelsfield Road, Saltdean

Chris and Steve are opening their amazing, work in progress, for the second year running, a 3 tiered garden which includes a large meadow and field leading out to the Downs. There are beautiful succulents in containers, incredible views from the meadow to both the ocean and the Downs and lovely planting. They will be serving tea and cakes too. Steep steps to gain entry to the garden.



Garden 8...... Driftwood 4 Marine Drive Bishopstone
BN25 2RS

Our patron Christine Walkden was at Driftwood for the opening of the trail in 2019.

Geoff Stonebanks's garden, Driftwood , has been featured on BBC Gardeners' World, was a finalist in BBC Gardeners' World Magazine's Garden of the Year 2016 and has been seen on Good Morning Britain and had a fabulous 8-page feature in Coast Magazine in 2017. You can also read many reviews of the garden on TripAdvisor. It has also won several national awards and featured in many national and local papers and magazines.

Visitors can enjoy tea on the beach garden or amongst the sumptuous planting in the back garden. Winner Best Small Garden in UK 2012 and owner of coveted Daily Mail National Competition blue plaque. Check out the Driftwood monthly updates in the national gardening magazine, Garden News.

Garden 9......18 Hill Rise Seaford, BN25 2UA

Joe and Penny have been persuaded to open their stunning garden this year, more details to follow.

Garden 10......The Walled Garden at the School House, On The Egg, Bishopstone, Seaford, BN25 2UF

Following its great success on the 2019 trail, Tim and Karen will be opening their gorgeous, work in progress, walled garden in the tiny hamlet of Bishopstone old village. Located off the village green, called The Egg, it has stunning views of the borrowed landscape of both the Downs and St Andrews Church. It is an extremely relaxing space and quite unique. Park in Bishopstone Road by the church but don't block the road to make sure you leave plenty of space for farm vehicles.

Walk up the gravel path to the lychgate, follow the flagstone path, past the church door down to the village hall, walk through the hall yard, then through two gates (Lovers Lane), immediately left there is a huge wooden door in a high wall, this is the garden.

Garden 11......Seaford Community Garden, Seaford

A community garden open to all, run by volunteers with flowers, fruit, vegetables and a wildlife pond. Lots of plants for sale! Their mission statement is to creatively develop a garden that will empower and develop the participants leading to a significant improvement in the quality of life for the wider community. Click HERE for their web site.

Garden 12......Windover, Chyngton Lane North, Seaford
BN25 3UU

After several years absence, Helen has decided to open her beautiful garden again, more details to follow.


Garden 13...... Martlets, The Broadway, Alfriston,
BN26 5XH

Rosalind Anesi will be opening her garden again for the trail. Having enjoyed it so much in 2019, opening 1 day, she has decided to do both. It is a large garden sloping down away from the house with garden scupture dotted around with a pretty, small courtyard at the front of the house. Lots of plants for sale too.

The generous people of Sussex raised £3.7m to help fund the building of the Macmillan Horizon Centre, but more is still needed. The running costs of the centre are covered by Macmillan Cancer Support, and services provided by a team of skilled local volunteers. Macmillan is funded solely by donations and the running costs of the centre are over £650,000 per annum. All monies raised from this trail will support Macmillan in it's operation.

All the monies raised from entrance fees to the gardens, monies raised by selling raffle tickets, along with the proceeds from the sales of teas and coffees will go towards maintaining and operating the new Cancer Support Centre in Brighton. Any stalls operated in the gardens will donate a percentage of their proceeds to the charity as well.

In addition to the monies raised on the trail Geoff Stonebanks also raises money for Macmillan through income from private visits to his own garden, Driftwood throughout the Summer, through raffle of artist donated pieces and proceeds from the sale of tea and cakes at many charity openings. Over £81000 raised to date!

In December 2017, trail organiser, Geoff Stonebanks, received an invitation from Buckingham Palace. His Royal Highness, Prince Charles invited him to a reception for Macmillan Cancer Support in January 2018. Macmillan said it was a thank you for him having made a significant difference to the charity and to those suffering with cancer! Read all about his experience visiting the Palace here.

It was an amazing evening for Geoff at Buckingham Palace, in January 2018, meeting His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales, at a reception for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Geoff has attended a Macmillan Executive Team Meeting in the Horizon Centre, Brighton where The Trustees and Board met with groups of volunteers and staff at the centre and heard direct from Geoff about his fundraising work with the charity, both the trail and other events in his own garden Driftwood. He can be seen here with Chief Executive of Macmillan, Lynda Thomas prior to the meeting.

Ruth Leonard, Head of Volunteering Development at Macmillan Cancer Support said at the opening in 2019, "Fundraised income makes up 98% of Macmillan’s income, which means the dedication and generosity of our supporters like Geoff is absolutely essential to changing the lives of people living with cancer. Thanks to the effort of such incredible fundraisers we raised a tremendous £230.8 million in 2018. It is 2.5 years since we opened our dedicated Information and support centre in Brighton, the Horizon Centre and since its launch it has supported 100’s of people living with cancer in Sussex, to live life as fully as they can. Geoff has singlehandedly raised nearly £80 thousand for the Horizon Centre through his Driftwood Fundraising Group Committee, including £53,000 from this amazing Macmillan Coastal Garden trail alone. Geoff, on behalf of Macmillan, I’d like to say thank you."

Christine Walkden's horticultural knowledge, combined with her obvious passion for gardening is what has made her a TV and radio favourite, and The One Show’s resident gardening expert, along with being a regular pannelist on Gardeners' Question Time. Autumn 2014 saw her in a 15 part series on BBC1 called "Glorious Gardens from Above". Christine said "I support cancer charities as we have had problems in the family so I know myself what people go through and also how its upsets families as well. I just hope it may help you." See Christine's web site HERE.

Surprisingly the BBC2 series Christine did a few years ago, Christine's Garden is not available on DVD but you can see them all on YouTube for free. Check them out HERE!

In 2019, Christine generously agreed to travel to Sussex to open the event in the award winning garden of organiser, Geoff Stonebanks. She said "Opening gardens and sharing them with others is a great treat for all. It generates a sense of community, camaraderie and interest in the beauty that gardeners create. I am thrilled to continue as patron for the fifth year, especially having seen it first hand."

Christine goes on to say "There are probably umpteen better gardens down my street, but it doesn't bother me - I'm not competitive or pretentious. I don't want a showcase garden. It's the relationship I have with my garden that matters."

Christine can be seen above in Geoff's garden with 2 visitors.

Over £81000 has now been raised by Geoff's Driftwood Fundraising Group since 2012!

In September 2016, Geoff and some of his garden supporters, were invited to a preview of the centre and were amazed to find that Driftwood Fundraising Group was listed on the roll call of supporters who have raised money for the centre. Sussex Committees have raised over £1.1 million and Driftwood £81000 of that.

Please contact Geoff Stonebanks, the organiser for more information on the event.