With a glimmer of hope of the horizon and green shoots of normality finally arriving – a local charity is celebrating as its much-loved annual fundraising event gets the go-ahead for 2021.

Nestled in three acres of gardens and woodland in the pretty village of Mellor – situated on the border of Greater Manchester and the High Peak – is the Mellor Country House. A UK charity that has been changing lives since its inception at the end of the 19th century, by providing much needed respite for disadvantaged families, carers, groups and individuals from areas in Stockport, Manchester and Salford.

Mellor Country House is a small self-funded charity, relying solely on a committee of volunteers, and one of its biggest annual events – an impressive plant sale that includes show-stopping hanging baskets – has now launched for spring 2021 following the fund-sapping cancellation of last year’s event due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

Anne Forshaw, an annual visitor to the event, commented: “The plant sale returning is big news in the area – it’s a popular event in the calendar and locals love to visit, buy beautiful plants, and then display their floral purchases in and around the local villages. With the grey times of the past year, the brightly coloured flowers and stunning baskets dotted around really will bring much-needed smiles to everyone who sees them. In addition to the colourful arrays, Mellor Country House is a much-loved charity and, I for one, cannot wait to support the fabulous work it does for underprivileged individuals and families in Greater Manchester.”

The annual plant sale is an important fundraising event and, back with a passion for 2021 with pre-orders available online now, Katie Clark, volunteer for Mellor Country House, explains more: “Like many charities we’ve been hit very hard over the past year, and it’s our fundraising activities that ensure we can continue to provide short self-catering breaks to those who otherwise wouldn’t get any respite from the hardships of their day-to-day lives. The escape we provide has literally been lifesaving to some individuals, and without the much-needed funds required to keep the charity’s head above water, we wouldn’t be able to continue to help people in dire need of a break.”

Thanks to the volunteers’ dedication and tenacity, the team has already set up the pre-order form on the website https://www.mellorcountryhouse.co.uk, with order forms also available for collection from the house.

The in-person event is set to be held at Mellor Country House on the weekend of 22nd and 23rd May – with government advice adhered to at all times. There will be a range of high-quality, affordable plants, locally famous hanging baskets direct from the charity’s grower, and a large selection of shrubs and bedding plants – sold in recyclable trays. Light refreshments will be on sale to enjoy outside or to takeaway, where profits will also go to the much-loved charity.

“We’ve had to adapt our fundraising plans enormously over the past 12 months”, continued Katie, “but with huge thanks to our network of supporters and local businesses, we managed to raise an impressive £9306.09 during the festive season via a range of Christmas activities hosted online. This helps us make a radical difference in so many lives.”

The charity is also calling green-fingered locals and those with a little spare time on their hands to become Friends of Mellor Country House and assist, within small socially distanced volunteer groups, with gardening and general exterior maintenance of the grounds of the home. For more information on becoming a Friend or for details on upcoming activities please contact mellorcountryhou@btconnect.com  for further assistance.

For more information on Mellor Country House please visit https://www.mellorcountryhouse.co.uk/


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