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Kew glasshouse restoration

The Temperate House at Kew Gardens was due to shut because of its deteriorating state. However, multi-million pound grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and private donations means a five-year restoration scheme can now go ahead.

The 150 year-old Grade 1 listed building is home to the South African Cycad and the Chilean Wine Palm, the world's tallest glasshouse plant.

Martin Stew spoke to the Head of Glasshouses at Kew Gardens, Greg Redwood.

Famous glasshouse saved at Kew

The Temperate House has been saved from closure

The world's largest surviving Victorian glasshouse has been saved, after Kew Gardens managed to raise the £33m needed to repair it.

Temperate House was due for closure in its 150th anniversary year due to health and safety fears, but thanks to gifts and DEFRA and lottery grants it can now survive.


Orchid display opens

Abrand new exhibition of Orchids opens in Kew Gardens today for those wanting toescape the wintry weather for a taste of the tropics.

The Princess of Wales Conservatory in the south-west London gardens has been transformed into a sea of glorious flowers in order to celebrate of the colour, drama and beauty associated with this extraordinary and diverse group of plants.

Vibrant orchids will dominate the lush, wet tropical zone of the conservatory. Stunning displays of swirling colour will adorn the glasshouse pillars and arches. Hanging baskets will explode with a range of colours, creating waves of magnificent hues.


Woman killed by falling branch in Kew Gardens named

The woman who died when tree branches crashed down on her head as she walked through Kew Gardens has been named as Erena Louise Wilson, a 31-year-old accounts manager from New Zealand. She died instantly an inquest has heard.

She was unable to get out of the way when part of the Lebanese cedar snapped off and fell on her, as rain and gusts of up to 30mph swept the capital.

West London Coroner's Court heard she had been walking through the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, west London, with two friends when tragedy struck.

Her friends stated they were walking along the path and heard a loud crack, I believe they thought it was thunder.

They looked up and saw the tree branch descending. They ran and when they looked round, the lady was on the floor in an uncomfortable position to say the least, with lots of branches around her.

As far as we know, she would have died instantly from traumatic head injuries.

– Inspector Simon Young told the inquest
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