Image for Estates Garden Manager Martin Towsey, Estates Garden Manager

MARTIN TOWSEY, ESTATES GARDEN MANAGER

Martin is responsible for all the horticultural areas of the estate including the Abbey Gardens, Safari Park (enclosures and foot safari), The Woburn Hotel, The Woburn Village, Woburn Golf Club Amenity Areas, London Estates and the Duke and Duchess' private residence.

How did you get started in the industry?

I did a 3 year apprenticeship with Nottingham City Council while on a day release to my local horticultural college. Every 6 months I would move placement around the city gardens, learning about different aspects of horticulture and life. Thank you to all the great people I have worked with whilst learning my trade!

What advice would you give to others starting out?

Hard work pays off and seize every opportunity for experience. Try to become a rounded horticulturalist and don’t let anyone tell you it can’t be done.

What is your typical day?

I would start by catching up with the bigger projects across the estate. My job is 50 / 50 office and out on the land.  No two days are the same except for the daily duties of emails and phone calls, but I have been lucky to have been set up to tackle a lot of this on the move. I also have a great team. 

What is the best aspect of your job?

Working with my brilliant team of staff and the projects we are lucky to be able to do, particularly at the Abbey Gardens. We have seen the garden come back to life from the work we are doing here.

And the worst?

Time wasting and time theft. Grrrrrrh!

What is your greatest work achievements?

Seeing the Abbey Gardens coming to life and receiving the awards and recognition the Gardens Team are getting.       

How do you wind down after a hard day?   

Spending time with my family or mowing the lawn at home.

What does the future hold?

We have five sets of 5 year plans for the Gardens. This is to make them a nationally recognised garden that is stimulating, relevant and interesting - that’s my focus!

Events & Exhibitions

Image for Carriage Tours  - June

Carriage Tours - June

An exciting experience back by popular demand, enjoy a tour in a private carriage around the grounds and gardens
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Flower Painting Study Day

Join us for a day of flower painting as we turn one of the rooms in the Historic North Court of Woburn Abbey into an art studio for the day.
Image for Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2018

Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2018

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Now in its 9th year, the ‘Gardeners’ Garden Show’ has become an important diary date for gardening enthusiasts. Set in 42-acres of the Abbey’s beautifully landscaped gardens, the show offers unparalleled access to award-winning exhibitors and nurseries that have been handpicked by Woburn. The displays are complemented by an array of live entertainment, artisan foods, shopping, demonstrations, informative talks and gardening advice, tips and tours.
Image for VIP Garden Show package Saturday 23rd June

VIP Garden Show package Saturday 23rd June

We invite you to enjoy a very special day out at the Woburn Abbey Garden Show with our exclusive Art and Horticulture package.
Image for VIP Garden Show package Sunday 24th June

VIP Garden Show package Sunday 24th June

We invite you to enjoy a very special day out at the Woburn Abbey Garden Show with our exclusive VIP packages.
Image for Rose Study Day

Rose Study Day

Studying and appreciation of roses with David Austin’s Rosarian Michael Marriott
Image for Twilight Parkland Tour - July

Twilight Parkland Tour - July

Experience the grounds of Woburn Abbey in a whole new light on this exclusive out-of-hours tour of the parkland and gardens.
Image for Carriage Tours - July

Carriage Tours - July

to
An exciting experience back by popular demand, enjoy a tour in a private carriage around the grounds and gardens
Image for Bee Walk

Bee Walk

Discover the importance of attracting bees to your garden and, more importantly, how to attract them.
Image for Twilight Parkland Tour

Twilight Parkland Tour

Experience the grounds of Woburn Abbey in a whole new light on this exclusive out-of-hours tour of the parkland and gardens.
Image for Buterfly and Bugs Walk

Buterfly and Bugs Walk

Discover the beautiful butterflies to be found in the Abbey Gardens and find out how you can attract more species to your own garden, during this guided walk.
Image for VIP Picnic Carriage Tour in Woburn Abbey Deer Park

VIP Picnic Carriage Tour in Woburn Abbey Deer Park

Experience a picnic like no other - in The Bedford Estate’s private traditional wagonette drawn by a team of four magnificent horses.
Image for Twilight Parkland Tour - August

Twilight Parkland Tour - August

Experience the grounds of Woburn Abbey in a whole new light on this exclusive out-of-hours tour of the parkland and gardens.
Image for Carriage Tours - August

Carriage Tours - August

to
An exciting experience back by popular demand, enjoy a tour in a private carriage around the grounds and gardens
Image for Bat Walks

Bat Walks

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
Image for Bat Walk

Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
Image for Bat Walk

Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
Image for Bat Walk

Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
Image for Adam Frost: Intro into Garden Design

Adam Frost: Intro into Garden Design

Have you ever wondered how to approach designing your own garden, what you need to know to be a garden designer or the skills involved?
Image for Christmas Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

Christmas Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

A masterclass in Christmas flower-arranging with floral expert, Jonathan Moseley.