Image of Jesus College gardens

College opens for National Garden Scheme on 15 July

Our beautiful College grounds will be open from 11am to 4pm on Sunday 15 July as part of the annual National Gardens Scheme charitable fundraising programme – and there’s something for everyone from plants to wildlife to the chance to explore a WWII air raid shelter.

Based on Jesus Lane in central Cambridge, Jesus College maintains around 24 acres of sports fields and gardens. A professional in-house team maintain and improve the gardens, which range from formally planted beds to an orchard and managed woodland.

Visitors will be able to explore the normally private Fellows’ Garden. Once the most revered fruit garden in the University in the 17th century, it is home to ancient trees, a Victorian glasshouse and an 11ft high potting shed in the shape of an upturned plant pot.

A new wildlife pond will also be on show, featuring native plant species both in and around the water, including water lily, marsh marigold, purple loosestrife and yellow flag iris as well as bee and insect friendly flowers.

The College’s Second World War air raid shelter will also be open to visitors. Located beneath the Orchard, it was built in 1939 when RAF airman were based at the College, and runs for 100ft beneath the ground.

Paul Stearn, head gardener at Jesus College, said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming people to tour our beautiful gardens. They are an integral part of the College, giving our community wonderful spaces to work and study in, as well as setting off our stunning buildings and sculptures. We really do have something for everyone this Sunday.”

Entry costs £4.00 for adults and is free for children – all proceeds will go towards the National Garden Scheme’s chosen health charities. Find out more at