Working with the Missenden Walled Garden Charity

8-weeks into lockdown and with the possibility that the hospitality service may be able to reopen sometime in July, we have started working with our local suppliers and understanding what produce they will have once we reopen.

Our nearest supplier is within our own grounds and is a charity called Missenden Walled Garden who provide day support for people with disabilities or mental health issues and enrich the lives of their members, through Work, Education and Community Engagement. The mix of outdoor and indoor environments give their members a sense of freedom in a relaxed and secure environment. They help their members to grow with worthwhile and valued jobs including growing vegetables, fruit, herbs and maintaining the gardens and the grounds of Missenden Abbey. There is a tremendous sense of connection with the natural environment and the need to nurture and care of it and each other. We are lucky enough to be able to source and use their freshly grown produce and incorporate them into our menus.

Last summer we had the first batch of Missenden Walled Garden Honey which was served at breakfast and used in salad dressings. By the time we reopen, we will be lucky enough to be in tomato season and will be able to use their homegrown heritage tomatoes with an abundance of salad leaves and fresh herbs which have been lovingly grown by their members and volunteers. We are also looking forward to receiving their summer berries to be used in the jams served with our famous afternoon teas. With the good weather recently, we are all hoping that the Walled Garden Orchard provides us with the excellent crop of apples and figs like they did last year. Working in partnership with the Walled Garden we are also hoping for a crop of mushrooms later this year.



As every chef likes their dishes to look fabulous on the plate, we also make use of the edible flowers grown in the Walled Garden as garnish, the same ones that the bees visit to produce their honey. Once we reopen and you are in the area, stop by and visit the Missenden Walled Garden and see their array of plants and hanging baskets for sale.

The relationship with the Missenden Walled Garden works both ways and the kitchen’s vegetable trimming waste is put back into their compost which is used in their grounds, making this a complete circle of collaboration.


With an abundance of fresh produce that can be used in our menus, our catering team have been using their time in lockdown to study diet and nutrition to ensure that we make the most of this supply. We have been studying how making better health choices and increasing hydration can improve your appearance, health and weight. We want to make sure that our menus are balanced and include vegetables, fruit, leafy greens, more proteins and complex carbohydrates. During your visit to Missenden Abbey, you can let us know of any dietary requirements and we will adapt our menus to your needs.

Philip Child – Head Chef


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