PEOPLE are being given the chance to be front row for The Beatles; cross the finish line with Roger Bannister, and
join Lawrence of Arabia on camel-back – all in a south Warwickshire garden.
The Dorsington garden near Stratford belonging to the late millionaire publisher and poet Felix Dennis, featuring over 50 life-size bronze sculptures, is opening its gates to the public.
The usually private ‘Garden of Heroes & Villains’ created by Felix will open for a Family Fun Day on Saturday August 6 to raise funds for The Heart of England Forest.
Felix began commissioning bronze sculpture in the mid 1990s and set about creating a private showcase garden at his home containing specimen trees, ponds, streams, a yew maze and dry stone walls to house his collection showing ‘freeze-frame’ moments in the life of the characters depicted – including Muhammed Ali, Vincent van Gogh, Albert Einstein, Bruce Lee, Billie Holiday, William Shakespeare, King Kong and more.
Sitting alongside the garden is Felix’s final commission, The Shard Garden: A field of poetry – inscribed on 45 large shards embedded in the ground, surrounding his bronze figure.
Visitors will be able to explore the garden, see the statues up close, meet the birds of prey from Hawkwise Falconry, experience the poetry shard garden, enjoy the woodland walks and arboretum or simply relax on the courtyard where refreshments will be served.
With a children’s adventure quiz, yew hedge maze and falconry workshops there will be fun for the whole family, and dogs on leads are also welcome.
Events manager Toby Fisher said: “It is wonderful to be able to give people the opportunity to experience this magical and usually private place, while raising money for The Heart of England Forest. With a landscaped garden, art in abundance, guided woodland walks, and activities for the children, there really is something for everyone.”
Money raised will go towards Felix’s legacy of creating The Heart of England Forest – planting and preserving a broadleaf forest for the benefit of both the public and wildlife
So far the charity has planted more than a million trees covering more than 3,000 acres across Worcester and Warwickshire.
Trustee David Bliss said: “This charity open day offers a great opportunity for people to come and see the work The Heart of England Forest is doing, what we have to offer the public and how they can be come involved in planting tomorrow’s great native woodland.”
The garden will be open from 10am until 5pm and with free parking. Admission is £7 (children free). Visit www.heartofenglandforest.com/events for tickets.
Visit www.felixdennis.com and www.heartofenglandforest.com for further details.