The Butterfly Garden

The Butterfly Garden

Our History

There was never a plan to set up the project, at least not until the summer of 2002 when six young autistic students were visiting a small commercial Nursery and garden centre on the outskirts of Cheltenham. They came, innocently enough, seeking gardening advice and unwittingly became the pioneer founders of 'The Butterfly Garden'. Invited to return and with guidance they teased life into a small, previously unused patch.... and people heard about it.

By November, a quarter of an acre of overgrown, derelict land was fenced off. A development plan was drawn up and as the months advanced the once tired and empty space was transformed. Today the garden extends across more than four acres. It weaves and entwines with 'the original business' (that still operates) and there is an emulation and sharing of daily tasks, that makes the experience very real. Now, over one hundred students attend each week. Many are referred by colleges, schools, day centres and NHS support agencies, whilst others are guided by friends and family. There are students on site every day and together they have transformed a wilderness and helped to shape a stimulating garden experience, with terrific resources.

The Butterfly Garden is no longer just about gardening though. As the project has evolved, people have just turned up offering help and services (amongst them teachers and care workers) and today the provision is both diverse and stimulating. We have volunteers supporting art, music, woodwork and catering as well as the gardening.

We have volunteers supporting art and craft, music, woodwork, catering as well as the gardening and new opportunities are constantly being added.

Introduction and induction for new students and volunteers.

We have an open door policy here, so,if you think that you might like to be involved come and visit. The attached form is in a place to give you an idea of how we work and to ensure that at very least we have a line of contact with you. We are not looking for details that you don't want us to have. Introduction Form

Our Partners

The users:
  • We have regular connection with Milestones, Betteridge and Alderman Knight Schools. With GLOSCOL, Stroud College and Star College.
  • We are getting referrals constantly through Social Services and various departments attached to the NHS.
  • Groups come in from Care Homes and from Day Centres.
  • We also have a growing number of direct domestic referrals
Project links :
  • GAVCA. -
  • Thrive -
  • People and Places Gloucestershire
  • St George's and St Vincent's Association -
Outreach :
  • The Eden Project.
  • Cheltenham Borough Parks Department
  • Cheltenham and Gloucester Airport

The Management of The Butterfly Garden.

This group is supported by a strong team of Accountants. Smith - Heath of Cheltenham and our book keeper Mrs Jo Mason.

The activities are run and managed on a daily basis by the project managers Chris Evans, Danny Carroll and Susie Findlater, with help from teachers, support workers and a team of quality volunteers.

our team

We warmly invite contact from interested parties, which can be directed to the trustees or to the 'day' team here or by telephone on 01452-713068 or by post to The Butterfly Garden, The Brambles, Bamfurlong Lane, Cheltenham, Glos. GL51 6SL.



How you can help The Butterfly Garden

We never close the door on offers of help and the county community has become enormously supportive. We rely heavily on this support to advance. There are many ways that you can help:-

  • All departments are grateful for resources and we are pleased to receive materials for any of the activities. From art supplies to woodwork tools.
  • We are always looking for second hand goods for our charity shop "FLUTTERBUYS". We struggle with space for clothing, though we do hold a pool of hats, gloves and scarves for student use. Anything and everything else seems to sell, generating very useful money for the garden.
  • We welcome volunteers, either to assist with the work, to help our regulars or to commit to behind the scenes activity.
  • We are always grateful for financial support too and are delighted when supporters choose to fund raise on our behalf. We are keen to be involved, so do let us know if you need help.
  • We also have some supporters who offer donations, we are a charity and therefore qualify for Gift Aid relief and we are registered with Just Giving (a direct donation arrangement, there is a link in the box on the right.).
Thank you for your interest and do contact us directly if you have any queries.

Donations are always VERY gratefully received, they can be sent to :

The Butterfly Garden,
Bamfurlong Lane, Cheltenham,
Gloucestershire. GL51 6SL
Tel : 01452 - 713068

Donations to The Butterfly Garden can now be made via Gift Aid, a Gift Aid form is available here.

Donations to The Butterfly Garden can now also be made online via credit card or PayPal. make a donation online
To find out more about Just Giving, click here.
To make a donation please click here.
Donations can also be made from your mobile phone with "Just text giving". find out how here.
make a donation by text
buy Cheltenham lottery ticketsYou can also buy Cheltenham lottery tickets.

We also sell a range of gift cards :-
The Butterfly Garden gift cards
please contact us for details.