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New plant centre and toilet block at Ickworth House

10:17 08 June 2014

Opening of new plant and garden centre and toilet block at Ickworth House. Left to right, Regional Director for NT East of England, Ben Cowell and Linda Munday.

Opening of new plant and garden centre and toilet block at Ickworth House. Left to right, Regional Director for NT East of England, Ben Cowell and Linda Munday.

Visitors to the National Trust’s Ickworth estate, near Bury St Edmunds, can now enjoy improved facilities following a £400,000 project.

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Yesterday, the new plant and garden centre and toilet block, in the main car park at Ickworth, were officially opened at an event which was a chance to thank those involved in the scheme.

Sue Borges, marketing and engagement manager at Ickworth, said the previous portable toilets were only supposed to be temporary, but they had been there for at least up to 10 years.

She added the plant centre had been very popular, but it needed to be in a more suitable building.

She said: “With nearly 200,000 visitors a year now with two thirds visiting the parkland and gardens we need better facilities. We’ve got a lovely new building which had to be in keeping with the environment because we have Grade II Listed status parkland.”

Mrs Borges added a ‘mini stumpery’ had been installed at the plant centre to give visitors a taste of what is in the gardens.

They can also buy a lot of the plants featured in the gardens at the centre, which has a landscaped area outside with an Italianate theme.

Amongst those attending yesterday’s celebrations were Ben Cowell, regional director for National Trust East of England, and Anthea Case, chairman of the National Trust East of England Advisory Board.

The work began in January and was completed in May.

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