Hiding behind the ancient city walls of Sandwich lie 3.5 acres of glorious gardens that have defied years of neglect and catastrophic flooding to bloom into one of the most beautiful spots in Kent.
The Gardens have always been an important part of the appeal of The Salutation, had unfortunately undergone years of neglect when Dom and Steph took over in 2003.
It was an immediate priority for the Parkers to unearth the fallen beauty and, thanks to the help of their incredibly hard-working team, the gardens were re-opened by Monty Don in 2007.
Fate does have a sense of humour, though, and the terrible floods of winter 2013 seemed like a desperately unfair way to test the mettle of the Head Gardener, Steve Edney, and his team.
Even after 5 million litres of sea water were pumped back into the river, there were lingering obstacles to once again restoring the gardens. The quality of the soil had been greatly degraded, while thousands of worms had been killed.
But, thanks to bloody-minded determination and the valued help of generous locals giving their time to help with repairs, the gardens were largely repaired within a few months. Now, they truly are something to behold…