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Mr Roger D. Turner

History of The Arboretum

One of the oldest and most spectacular Arboreta in Britain, is now open to the Public thanks to the Trustees of the R.D.Turner Charitable Trust.

The Arboretum was originally planned by Earl Mountnorris around 1800, and it is thanks to his botanical knowledge, discoveries, and foresight, that the Arboretum is as it is today. Although Arley became highly renowned for its exotic and rare tropical plants by the 1840's, it is the specimen trees that have stood the test of time, now being considered to be one of the country's finest tree collections.

In 1852 the Estate was purchased by Robert Woodward and remained in the possession of the Woodward family until it was acquired by Roger Turner, a midlands industrialist and philanthropist in 1959 at which time the Arboretum was in a state of neglect and many of the village properties required substantial renovation.

He set about the restoration of the Arboretum and Grade II listed Walled Gardens: modernised the properties and built 27 new houses, including Arley House, together with a Sports & Social Club, thereby creating a vibrant community. Roger Turner died in 1999 and left the entire Estate, in all 1600 acres, to his Charitable Trust which he had founded some 30 years earlier. 

The Trustees decided that the Arboretum was of sufficient importance for it to be extended and opened to the public with the Walled Gardens: a principal aim being to provide education for all age groups and in 2002 it was officially opened to the public by Lord Lichfield, who planted the Tilia (Tree No 257) to mark the occasion.

"Lovely Sunny Day Out"

"Spent a few hours here with my 2 little girls, we enjoyed the trails, play area and mazes. Excellent price to get in and the cafe prices were very reasonable too."

Rhid83 Visited May 2015
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3/5/15

“Truly stunning, A must go!”

"Amazing vistas, tranquil, calming and beautiful, a delightful little cafe with super friendly staff. All very impressive indeed. I'd happily go back. It's not as big as Kew, but certainly really beautiful, any time of year. very impressed indeed. Please do go and support it."

Dan T Visited April 2015
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20/4/2015

"Great Family Party"

"My sister booked Arley Arboretum for my niece's birthday party and we had a fantastic time. The staff in the tea room couldn't have been more helpful and kind. They prepared 3 courses for us all, themed the seating area to our requirements and couldn't have been anymore friendly or accommodating!"

Jes F Visited April 2015

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16/4/2015