Wisley main house

From nurturing our initial ideas to running the event on the day it was fantastic to work with you at Wisley. The advice you were able to provide throughout the process and the honest approach that you have meant that our event was a complete success. No problem was too big and it made it a really enjoyable day for both our guests and our team.

Wisley itself needs no real selling as it is a beautiful venue and the area of Wilson’s Wood perfectly suited our event.

Babcock International


About Us

Our expert event planners will work with you to bring your ideas to life, creating the perfect ambience for an indoor or al fresco event, whether your style be contemporary or traditional; intimate or flamboyant. Whatever your event, we have spectacular garden venues for every season.

Functions at Wisley

We would be delighted to host your next function at our breath-taking gardens at RHS Garden Wisley, Surrey. Our personal and professional approach means your next event will almost plan itself! Please do contact the team to discuss your ideas and to see how we can make your next event come to life.

Testimonials

"
We are writing to express our appreciation of all the staff at RHS Wisley who helped to make our event a great success. In particular, we wanted to highlight the central role played by RHS Wisley’s Events Manager, Chrissie Milton, both on the night and in the run-up to it. We all drew immediate comfort from Chrissie’s unruffled approach, clear grasp of our wedding concept and “can-do” attitude – qualities which were essential in helping to plan an Indian wedding! Her engagement helped to alleviate quite a bit of the pressure we were under as organisers. Our guests were clearly enchanted by the appearance of the Glasshouse, particularly in the evening light and we received a lot of positive feedback in relation to the venue".

Groom, Glasshouse Wedding

"The RHS gardens at Wisley provided the most wonderful setting for our daughter's wedding reception in the Glasshouse. Surrounded by beautiful flowers on a summer's afternoon must be the very definition of romantic and the gardens did not disappoint. The Event Management team headed up by the wonderful Chrissie swung into action an hour before the gardens closed to the public and worked with our caterers to transform the exotic Glasshouse into a breathtaking space for entertaining our guests. Everything went like clockwork, not least due to the efficient organisation effected beforehand by Chrissie with both us and our caterer and we are all very grateful for her enthusiasm and drive to make the day as special as possible. All our guests enjoyed this unique experience - our overseas guests especially - and we all felt it had been a most special and memorable day for our family surpassing all expectations."

Mother of the Bride, Glasshouse Wedding

"We were delighted by the level of service provided by the Wisley event team. Staff were fully accommodating of our needs, and flexible with their arrangements. The venue was stunning and our clients thoroughly enjoyed their time at Wisley."

Brewin Dolphin

"It was a wonderful evening, a great success and I really enjoyed it... Our residents loved the occasion and the venue. Those who came earlier in the day were pleased to be able to enjoy the gardens on such a beautiful late summer’s day...I am glad to have chosen Wisley. People are already asking about next year and how we are going to beat this!"

Mountgreen Housing Association

"Wisley was an ideal location for our event and was really good value for money...Having access to all the garden facilities was an added bonus, as members of staff were able to enjoy the lovely surroundings during the lunch break and after our event had finished...We would use Wisley again and recommend their facilities."

tiaa

"Thanks you so much for your brilliant organisation and attention to detail for our trip to Wisley last Friday. It was a great experience, everyone was so kind and we felt very privileged.
 
Much of our enjoyment comes down to the hassle free booking and organisation and we are so grateful to you."


Mr Fothergills

 

RHS Garden Wisley


RHS Garden Wisley’s 200 acres of expertly designed and lovingly tended landscape contain all that is needed to in­spire any garden lover. Home to some of the world’s most important plant collections, Wisley is vital to the future of gardening and attracts around 1 million visitors each year.

There is a vast amount to experience at Wisley, including stunning mixed borders; a river of 9,000 roses and herbaceous plants running across gentle terraces and lawns that creates an unrivalled sensory impact in the Bowes Lyon Rose Garden; exquisite alpine and rocky plant collections in the  impressive Rock Garden, the nooks and crannies of the Crevice Garden and the Alpine House.

Also, a spectacular glasshouse – the size of ten tennis courts – houses a world-class collection of tender plants from across three climate zones. The exterior is equally striking, with naturalistic perennial borders creating a soft frame to the dramatic glass structure. A walk amongst the hills of azaleas and rhododendrons, the Pinetum and Arboretum, is sublime. And in the demonstration fruit and vegetable gardens, there are numerous opportunities to pick up hints for ‘growing your own’.

History

The Royal Horticultural Society was given Wisley in 1903, although at that time only a small part of the 24-hectare (60-acre) estate was actually cultivated as a garden, the remainder being wooded farmland. The original garden was the creation of George Fergusson Wilson – businessman, scientist, inventor, keen gardener and a former Treasurer of the Society. He bought the site in 1878 and established the Oakwood experimental garden, where he worked on making 'difficult plants grow successfully'. The garden acquired a reputation for its collections of lilies, gentians, Japanese irises, primulas and water plants. The present Wild Garden at Wisley is the direct descendant of Oakwood and despite changes is still true to the original concept.

After Wilson's death in 1902, Sir Thomas Hanbury bought Oakwood and the adjoining Glebe Farm. Sir Thomas was a wealthy Quaker who had founded the celebrated garden of La Mortola, on the Italian Riviera. In 1903, he presented the Wisley estate in trust to the Society for its perpetual use.

Nothing could have been more providential in the circumstances. For the previous 30 years, the Society had been seeking a larger garden 'beyond the radius of the London smoke' to replace the garden at Chiswick, which it had leased since 1822. It was also committed to building a new exhibition hall and offices in Vincent Square (and the construction work had already started). Both projects were seen as a fitting way to celebrate the Society's forthcoming centenary in 1904 but there were heated arguments among the Fellows over which should have priority for the available funds.

Sir Thomas' generous donation solved both these problems. By May 1904, the move from Chiswick to Wisley was complete and, in July, King Edward VII officially opened the new headquarters at Vincent Square – all in time to mark the centenary.

While Wisley was taking shape as an ornamental garden, its educational and scientific roles were never forgotten. A small laboratory was opened and the School of Horticulture founded to instruct young people in the principles of horticulture and prepare them for careers as professional gardeners.

Following the move to Wisley the Society resumed trials of flowers, vegetables and fruit, which had been an important part of the Society's work since 1860 . The trials 'epitomise... the Society's endeavour to show to the public the best kinds of plants to grow' – one of the principal objectives of the garden. That combination of learning and pleasure is the essence of Wisley.

Oriental gazebo