preston manor walled garden brighton

This summer, I fell in love with Brighton all over again when I discovered this amazing secret garden for years I had no idea existed.

I was out for a jog around my local park and decided to take a different path home when I found it. After mentioning it to a few neighbourhood friends, turns out I’m not the only person who’s been walking past it for years; not one clue it was there. Let’s take a tour…

To the left of the entrance to Preston Manor in Preston Park just a 10 minute stroll from my house you’ll find a gravel pathway that takes you up to a little church complete with churchyard out the front. Follow the path up, but don’t go as far as the church, instead turn to your right where you’ll see a cool old wonky gravestone…

Walk down the steps through the gate next to it and you’ll find yourself in the back gardens of the old manor house.

Follow the path along past the back of the house with its huge sweeping lawn which every year hosts a pop-up cinema… walk right to the end of the path and turn left at the end down some steps…

Stopping to take in the view over the lawns to the side of the church…

Walk a little bit further – we’re nearly there – and on the right, you’ll find the entrance we’re looking for…

Welcome to my secret Brighton garden – an old Edwardian walled garden where the owners of the manor house once grew herbs and vegetables. Today, it’s open for everyone to enjoy – if they find out about it! It’s the perfect escape hatch filled with cosy corners, thinking benches and flower beds bursting with foliage and although it’s pretty compact, it’s easy to lose hours exploring its cobbled paths.

In the south-west corner of the garden is its most curious sight – lots of miniature headstones lining the bottom of the flint wall. This is what’s known as the Preston Manor Dog Cemetery, home to the graves of 14 dogs and 2 cats – including George the Pavilion Cat, who once lived at at the pavilion to help catch rats and mice, a Victorian practice that’s being introduced so I’ve heard.

It’s a magical walk underneath this covered archway which looks amazing from spring onwards and so pretty when the sunlight speckles through it.

…eventually leading to the best part: an amazing pond covered in stunning lily pads and home to a school of the brightest orange fish which obviously wouldn’t come out when I wanted to take a photo.

So there you have it. I hope you’ve enjoyed your private tour of my secret garden in Brighton. It’s such a cool little spot for a romantic picnic, to just sit and contemplate things – or even a marriage proposal!


  1. Such a breathtaking spot! You always find the most original places! So it's actually a public garden maintained by the city? And no one knows about it! Amazing!

  2. Yes! It's actually public – I mean, some people do know about it but not as many as you'd think considering how beautiful it is. Most overlook it in favour of the huge park next door

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