Unusual Front Gardens #3: Chippenham

This used to be Golddiggers nightclub in Chippenham, an early Richard Branson owned venue, from which concerts were often broadcast on the BBC. NAH and I went to see Howard Jones play there in 1984, shortly after we'd married and moved down south to seek our fortunes. Before all of that it was a cinema.

Now it's been rebuilt as retirement flats with space for shops below: all of the latter aren't let at the moment. I don't quite understand the thinking behind building a complex which hasn't taken into account some of the elderly will require ground floor living.

As you can see the lack of a garden hasn't deterred some of the residents.


  1. Always love your unusual gardens ... SO much better than the "tasteless front gardens" I found on another blog (which I then unsubscribed) - so depressing to be so judgemental about other people's gardening efforts when you can CELEBRATE them. Keep on finding more for us to enjoy - thanks for sharing


  2. I worked for Sheltered Housing a couple of years ago and this was a common sight!

    Who can blame them?! :)

  3. Joanna - glad you're enjoying this series. I have a few more in the pipeline :)

    Liz - not at all. It's not just Sheltered Housing where it happens - a lot of the trendy flats built around Bristol harbour also sport something similar ;) Balcony geraniums seems to be the fashion this year!

  4. I love the balcony! And I agree with Joanna that it is great to look at other people's gardens in a non-judgemental way.

  5. Where there's a will there's a way.

  6. Children of the flower power generation perhaps. Was Goldiggers around then?

    I drive past here often and have watched as the display has developed. I wonder if it is the highest garden in Chippenham.


  7. Elizabethm - I try to be dispassionate, but it's not always that easy! After all, just because I love or hate something, it doesn't mean everyone else feels that way.

    Joanne - I've an even more extreme example of that philosophy to show you in this series :)

    Mark - I'm not sure. I can remember it featuring in Saturday night concerts and The Old Grey Whistle Test on the BBC in the 1970s. They probably are the highest gardens in Chippenham - that's quite a thought!

  8. Thanks for this, VP. Every effort of gardening should be applauded and this one is exuberant. I have been scouting my small town for likely post material for this meme, but always forget my camera. Must do better. :-)

  9. Frances - I do hope you remember your camera and join in again. I'd love to see some more of your home town or the places which inspire you, like that nursery you've posted about already :)


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