Winterbourne House & Gardens

Mary had a heart transplant in 2003 at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. The 21st March was one of her biannual visits for the MOT checkup. One of the original surgeons (Mr Majid Mukadam), who operated on Mary twenty years ago, was there to tell her she was good to go.

As the journey time from Hereford to University is around 90 minutes by rail, we always try to include another activity either around the University of Birmingham itself or in Birmingham City Centre, only a short distance away by train.

Google Map Showing QE Hospital, University of Birmingham and Winterbourne House & Gardens

On previous trips we have visited the Lapworth Museum of Geology and The Barber Institute of Fine Arts. Both come highly recommended although the latter will only reopen this summer after refurbishment.

This time we paid a visit to Winterbourne House & Gardens, just a short walk from the university campus. With a limited amount of time available (2 to 2½ hours), we spent most of the time in the gardens and finished with a rushed tour of the house. On the next visit, we will do the house first and garden second. Some photos from the gardens (in no particular order as Blogger has decided to play silly buggars) ...

Bulbs in Pots (Crown Imperial)

Western Skunk Cabbage

Plant Pot Tiers Also Popular

Alpine Glasshouse

Western Skunk Cabbage (close up)

Flower Border near the Walled Garden

Cacti Glasshouse

Scented Glasshouse (formerly the Carnivores)

Banana Plant (Tropical Hothouse)

Bird of Paradise Flower

Orchid Greenhouse

Japanese Bridge and Pool

We also took the diversion to Edgbaston Pool (privately owned, permissive path) and saw a decent amount of water birds including heron, little egret, great crested grebe, little grebe (aka dabchick), Canada goose, various gulls, and tufted duck. Most of the birdlife was some distance away and we'd both forgotten our binoculars. Here is a rather fuzzy picture of a breeding pair of grey herons taken at 30x magnification on my Pixel 7 Pro.

We may revisit again in September when Mary has her next MOT as we already have the guidebook. Just need to remember the binoculars.

Almost forgot to mention, the tea shop sells a range of light snacks, cakes and drinks - so good we visited it twice; at the beginning for a warming cuppa and near the end for sustenance to last us on the train journey home. We whizzed through the gift shop as we were running late for the train.


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