The Friends of Walton Estate are celebrating their milestone anniversary with a special event at Walton Hall on Thursday 17 November, 1pm to 4pm.

Back in December 2002, a group of passionate individuals came together with a shared love for Walton Hall and Gardens. Their aim being to maintain the heritage and character of the estate to ensure it remained somewhere for the public to enjoy for many years to come.

20 years later, the Friends of Walton Estate are celebrating this milestone anniversary with a special event at Walton Hall. The group will showcase the breadth of work they have achieved during their time volunteering on site over the past two decades.

During the group’s existence, they have raised thousands of pounds which has been spent on preserving, renovating and supporting the estate. This includes supporting the restoration of the glasshouses, purchasing the much-loved alpacas, installing the new gates at the Children’s Zoo, and not forgetting their constant presence volunteering at events.

Cllr Tony Higgins, cabinet member for leisure and community, said: “We are extremely grateful to everyone who has been involved with the Friends of Walton Estate group over the years. They are a huge part of everyday life at Walton and have contributed to the estate in so many positive ways.

“They have helped to maintain and improve so many things that make Walton Hall and Gardens so popular and have helped to create a place that so many people love and enjoy. They really are a fantastic asset for the estate and for volunteering in Warrington.

“We look forward to their 20th anniversary celebrations and I encourage everyone who is able, to come down on Thursday afternoon to see for themselves the amazing work the Friends have accomplished since 2002. Here’s to another 20 years of great partnership working.”

The Friends continue working hard to support the estate, including running a thriving gardening group which looks after the glasshouses courtyard, sensory beds, and the winter garden. Some members are also keen photographers who provide beautiful images from around the estate, particularly of the animals at the Children’s Zoo.

The group also regularly provide heritage talks and are available to answer questions and conduct hall tours during open days.

For more information about the Friends of Walton Estate, visit their Facebook page.