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The Cancer Research UK Legacy Garden

Award-winning garden designer Tom Simpson has joined forces with Cancer Research UK to create a stunning garden at RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival, highlighting the importance of gifts in wills to progress and breakthroughs in cancer research.

The Cancer Research UK Legacy Garden by award-winning garden designer Tom Simpson

The Cancer Research UK Legacy Garden at Hampton Court is the first of four gardens the charity will be exhibiting at RHS events across 2021 and 2022. Each designer has been given an identical brief, to create an immersive, contemplative space that symbolises how leaving a gift in a will to Cancer Research UK ensures research can continue to save lives for generations to come.

The Cancer Research UK Legacy Garden by award-winning garden designer Tom Simpson

Tom’s Hampton Court space has been designed in the form of two interlinked circles to create an infinity symbol. A serpentine water feature flows through the garden, the source and end of which are both obscured from view. Both features represent the continuity and everlasting progress of cancer research, with each new breakthrough inspiring the next.

The Cancer Research UK Legacy Garden by award-winning garden designer Tom Simpson

At the heart of the garden, where the two halves of the infinity symbol intersect, lies a curved boardwalk engraved with a personal message from a supporter who has pledged a gift in their will to Cancer Research UK. Nestled within the planting, providing a peaceful place to relax and watch the water, there is a sunken paved terrace where visitors can enjoy a quiet moment of reflection.

The Cancer Research UK Legacy Garden by award-winning garden designer Tom Simpson

Tom uses a rich tapestry of bold drifts of flowering plants and a strong matrix of grasses in his planting scheme, creating a colourful and textural sensory experience as visitors move through the garden. The core colors are the purples and pinks associated with the Cancer Research UK logo, including Salvia ‘Amethyst’ and Veronicastrum f.roseum ‘Pink Glow’. These will be accented with zesty lime greens and pops of yellow.

Plant list:

Verbascum (Cotswold Group) 'Pink Domino'
Campanula latifolia
Veronicastrum virginicum 'Lavendelturm'
Salvia nemorosa 'Amethyst'
Echinacea paradoxa 'Yellow Mellow'
Dianthus carthusianorum
Astilbe x arendsii 'Erika'
Digitalis parviflora 'Milk Chocolate'
Liriodendron tulipifera
Salvia nemorosa 'Caradonna'
Carex muskingumensis
Echinacea 'Green Jewel'
Persicaria amplexicaulis 'Rosea'
Veronicastrum virginicum f. roseum 'Pink Glow'
Molinia caerulea subsp. arundinacea 'Skyracer'
Echinacea pallida
Molinia caerulea subsp. caerulea 'Moorhexe'
Digitalis lutea
Verbascum blattaria f. albiflorum
Euphorbia seguieriana
Salvia 'Nachtvlinder'
Agastache 'Blue Boa'
Heuchera cylindrica 'Greenfinch'
Salvia microphylla 'Blue Monrovia'
Agastache mexicana 'Red Fortune'
Carex divulsa
Sanguisorba officinalis 'Martin's Mulberry'
Betula nigra 'Cully'
Patrinia punctiflora
Salvia guaranitica 'Super Trouper'