Guest book

Use the comments below to leave feedback or a message for the gardeners, or simply to describe your visit. Say hello!

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43 thoughts on “Guest book

  1. What amazing memories you have given to so many people, Willow Cottage! First visit my friend’s son was in a Shakespeare play, and now both he and my own four sons are all fathers, and I as well as grandchildren have a (admittedly Step) GREAT Granddaughter… So how many years of pleasure and delight have you given me? From plays and Musical Events to Talks, Sunday strolls around the grounds, quick visits to show visiting friends the spell-binding treat of Hansel & Gretel’s hidden away cottage… The deer, the birds, the wild life, the beautiful flowers and trees… Thank you so very, very much!

  2. Dear Christine and family,
    We would like to thank you for your trust and generosity in opening Willow Cottage and garden to all who were very fortunate in getting to know of it. A beautiful, enchanting place. It’s very sad that this has come to an end but the lovely, happy memories will live on forever.
    Thank you also to the very friendly gardeners and entertainers who contributed so much.
    With Best Wishes to you all.
    Georgie and Terry

  3. Dear Christine and family
    We would like to thank you for your trust and generosity in opening Willow Cottage and garden to all who were fortunate enough to get to know of it.
    A beautiful, enchanting place to have spent time in. We were very lucky.
    It’s very sad to know that this has come to an end but the lovely happy memories will live on forever.
    Thank you also to the very friendly gardeners and entertainers who contributed so much

    • Thank you for your lovely letter! It does help to know how many people share our sadness, and will treasure their memories! Love, Christine

      >

  4. Just found out about the sale – terribly sad. Hopefully one can still visit on a Sunday? 17 or 24 July to say farewell. As if life was not sad enough at the moment this had added to the gloom. Thank you for all those lovely years and I hope whoever buys it uses it and enjoys it and does not mess with it too much

  5. Hello, just looking you up upon wonderful reminiscence of Midsummers Night Dream 1969 or so. sad to see the the cottage is being sold on, hoping there may be one last chance to visit?….

    • Hi Eva and Gwilyn, Great to hear from you I remember you in Dick’s productions, but not sure which you were in at the cottage! We are still keeping the garden in order, and you could visit any time we are there. Tuesdays, Thursdays or Sundays are our days, but you’d need to check with me at email below to see if we ‘re there when you can visit. Best wishes, Christine Williams

    • Hi Eva and Gwilym, We are still working in the garden till the cottage is sold. Email me on willowcottage22@gmail.com -we are there on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, but not every week. Best wishes, Christine Williams

  6. Hi Christine, I have just seen that your beautiful cottage is up for sale, I never knew of your existence hence failed to ever visit but I do have a local events company in Chelmsford and would love to be involved in hosting any future events if the new owners wished to continue doing so. My company is called Sshhh Events Ltd and I can be contacted at julia@sshhhevents.com – Best wishes for the future x

    • Hi Julia, We are having an informal open day this Sunday, May 15th from 11am to 5pm, if you are able to visit. The result of the viewing days will be posted on the website, so if the buyers are interested in keeping the theatre going you will be able to contact them.
      Best wishes, Christine

      • Dear Christine, it was lovely to see you on sunday in that beautiful place. I am just copy and pasting what I wrote in the dreaded Facebook:
        “Yesterday I visited my favourite garden, an exquisite magical world, created by a family who found this secret space back in 1951 smothered by brambles. Generations have built a wonderland where, when you enter ,you feel as if you should hold your breath and walk in slow motion, in case it all disappears in front of your eyes. There is a small stream, a boat, a wild wood, bee hives, beautiful trees, wild and cared for flower beds, and an exquisite 16th century cottage.
        But what is really special is that this family have so generously shared this space with so many over all the years, inviting them to plays performed in the amphitheatre they dug in the woodlands, poetry readings, bee keepers meetings, and sunday afternoons for picnics. The magical cottage felt as if it was waiting for you and the family always welcomed you with tea and cake. With that spirit of generosity, the lovely Christine, the wife of Dick, who died in 2007, gave me the plants I wanted to buy, as a memory of the cottage, and we talked for a while about the spirit of giving that had inspired this wonderful small world. Sadly, they are going to have to sell it, and I only hope those who buy it will want to continue this wonderful tradition of sharing. Christine said ‘Where would the joy have been if we had not shared it, that was why we did it, to share this wonderful space.” I remember so many plays performed in the amphitheatre, where shows were rained off, snow machines got clogged and then the audience were smothered in an avalanche of fake snow, so much imagination, joy, kindness and generosity. When you left the amphitheatre in the evening, the woodland pathway was lit by flaming torches lighting you way home. I have taken friends here, held birthdays here, come alone in times of happiness and distress, and always been calmed and inspired by the way they have worked with nature in this heavenly landscape. It is like a hidden world, a new earth, a tiny world, but they opened it to everyone. We all heard about it by word of mouth, no Facebook.”

        thank you so much for giving so much

        • Hi Annette, Thanks for this. It mitigates the sadness to know that so many came and felt its peace and tranquillity, and joy and laughter as well! Christine xx >

  7. You have given me so many happy memories…. Who is handling the sale of Willow Cottage? ie an Agency, or a solicitor?

    • Hi Carorolle, the estate agent is Zoe Napier, and the brochure is on their website now with all details. Hope you’re well. Christine

    • Hi Carrolle. The cottage viewing day is next Saturday. Details from Zoe Napier website. Hope youโ€™re well. Christine >

      • Thank you. Just looked at their web-site, nothing there yet but I will keep an eye open! At least I have the memories of Willow Cottage through the years!

        • Carroll have just looked on the website, itโ€™s there, on the properties for sale page. Good luck! C >

  8. There is a sign above saying Willow Cottage is going up for sale, is that true, and there will be not programme for visits in 2016. If that is true how very sad, I will miss it so much.

    • Annette, I’m sorry it has come as a shock that the cottage is being sold. We did announce it at every show last year, and also to everyone who visited!
      It’s sad for all of us, but there is a time for everything to end unfortunately. Christine Williams

    • It is very sad, but Inevitable Iโ€™m afraid. We did announce it at every show and open day last year so Iโ€˜m sorry you missed it. It goes on sale next Saturday details from Zoe Napier website. >

      • sadly, although I came on Dick’s
        day, I don’t remember hearing the announcement. Your cottage and magical gardens have given me such joy for so many years.

  9. Hello willow cottage
    I would love speak to someone regarding a wedding at willow cottage. Is this something that can be done/discussed?
    Thank you
    Chanel

  10. Hi there, please can you advise if the events listed are for the coming year 2016 ……… ? Would love to visit for the first time……… many thanks, Barbara

    • Hi barbara, apologies for the delay getting back to you! Those events are for 2015, thank you for reminding me. I’ll add a note to say so at the top of that page.

    • Hi Barbara, Sadly there are no more shows as the cottage is going up for sale. Details on Zoe Napier properties.
      Christine

  11. We love the look of Willow Cottage for our wedding, would it be possible to speak to someone about it?
    Thanks
    Kate

    • Sorry I didn’t see this immediately Kate. Someone will be in touch with you shortly. Best regards, Dennis.

    • Willow Cottage is a magical dream – I don’t think there is a person alive who could visit and not be blown away by the magic of the place. I do so hope that we do not lose it when it is sold?

  12. Willow Cottage is such a lovely place we got married here last year and can’t wait to see the gardens again ๐Ÿ˜€

    • I cannot think of anywhere more magical for your wedding! I have never been to Willow Cottage, however long for, or briefly for, without coming away feeling that my life in some way has been uplifted – and “newcomers” I have brought with me are transfixwed, and do not want to leave!!! thank you so much, Dick, and of course Christine. Hope I can manage to come for the Remembering Dick Day!! ove to all, Carrolle Jamieson

        • Christine . I Visited today with our OZ family . They were enchanted . I’d love to make a small donation for our visit but didn’t know where to leave it or how to donate . I’m Linda Cooney by the way . . Dick knew my husband Ray ..

  13. Dear Sir/ Madam
    I am looking for a venue to hire for a birthday party in August. Please can someone get in touch with me so I can give you further details and you can provide me with prices and availability.

    Kind regards.

    Sarah

    • Hi Sarah,

      Apologies for the delay! I’ve forwarded your enquiry on to Christine, with your email address, and she should get back to you soon. I hope we can work something out for you ๐Ÿ™‚

      Best wishes,
      Kieran

    • Hi Sarah,
      Could you let me have your phone number? Mine is 0208 529 3910. You can phone it through!
      Thanks.
      Christine Williams

    • Hi Stefan,

      There will indeed, and my apologies for the wait. The programme will be on the website soon, and I’ll be posting a blog entry when it’s ready. Make sure to subscribe if you want to see it as soon as possible!

  14. Having “popped in” to Willow Cottage recently, it was great to meet Christine, albeit on her way out – just had time for a refreshing gallop round the garden whilst she topped up the Bird Feeders – lovely to see you again, Christine, and I look forward to Dick’s Day and the formal start of the Season, if we do not meet beforehand! Carrolle

  15. I am so happy to have found your website, I used to visit regularly, and thought that perhaps you were no longer opening. I am delighted.

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