Established in 1886, Batsford Arboretum covers 60 acres and contains approximately 3,000 trees and shrubs including several that are endangered in their natural habitat.
It contains ten champion trees, the National Collection of Japanese flowering cherries and several Red Data species. Over 65,000 people a year visit Batsford and through their visit become aware of the need to protect trees, both in the UK and around the world.
Since 2010 a programme of targeted and intelligent investment by The Batsford Foundation in both the visitor facilities and services on offer, and the maintenance and expansion of the tree and plant collection.
A new visitor centre, shop, plant centre and cafe/restaurant have been added turning Batsford into an 'all weather' visitor attraction open 364 days a year.
New facilities for young people including a children's play area, which provides clear messages on why we need trees, forests and woodlands
A new education centre, which is not only available for organised school groups, but can be hired and used by clubs, societies and the local community. This has also enabled Batsford to develop its already diverse and engaging series of events and activities which take place throughout the year.
An expansion of the arboretum grounds by over 10% of its original landholding;
New pathways and all-ability trails have been added, new bridges installed and investments made in all-terrain buggies, to allow less-able visitors to access and enjoy the arboretum and its plant collection.
New interpretation boards and path junction maps are currently being installed ready for the 2017 season.
New plantings focusing on conserving rare and endangered species from around the world, in particular conifers through work with the International Conifer Conservation Programme..
Establishment of ten-year planting plan in place to ensure the arboretum is a 'Garden for all Seasons'. New and expanded collections include aconites, cyclamen, hellebores, coloured-stemmed dogwoods and snowdrops for winter; magnolias, daffodils and flowering cherries for spring, flowering shrubs, such as hydrangeas, and wild flower meadows for summer and Japanese maples and other leaf-colouring trees for autumn.
New plantings are of course only part of the story. Batsford's superb maintenance programme ensures that all plants are looked after, from young saplings in their establishment phase, right through to managing the safe decline of mature veterans.