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Bournville and Selly Oak
Bournville, B30 2AE
0844 288 5009
500 metres from Cadbury World south of Birmingham, Bournville Garden Centre lies on the Bournville Estate that was originally established for the Cadbury's chocolate factory work force.
Set up by Cadbury's in the early 1900s to grow plants for the workers and encourage self-sufficiency, it was based in three blacksmiths's terraced, and now listed, cottages and has a public right of way through the car park dating back to Roman times.
Bought by the Co-op to grow flowers for funerals and then by the Walker family who turned it into a garden centre, it has since developed into the successful operation of today.
It is famed for its top-quality growing stock, as well as its friendly and knowledgeable staff.
Whilst plants form the core of this historic business, the centre also stocks a great range of garden furniture and cards, and, according to contract, will remain a nursery forever.
I come and get my seedlings and herbs here every year (I'm not very good at growing parsley!), and frequently use the centre as a good place to buy presents (jugs, mugs, children's books).
The staff are really lovely, and we always look out for the resident garden centre cat.
And it is brilliantly decorated at Christmastime - I use it as a handy (free!) attraction to distract my toddlers when we're waiting for school to finish.
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