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Opening Times
Mon-Sat 9.00am - 5.30pm
Thurs 9.00am - 7.00pm
Sun 10.30am - 4.30pm
Forest Lodge Garden Centre for great value and garden inspiration

Company History

Forest Lodge Garden Centre is owned and managed by a family-run independent company, Denys E. Head Ltd. The company also owns and manages Birdworld, the bird park and gardens which adjoins Forest Lodge, as well as Garden Style, a specialist plant nursery, which can be accessed via the plant area in Forest Lodge

The company was formed in 1958 by Denys Head and his wife Hilary, who set up a vegetable growing farm near Godalming in Surrey. The farm grew a wide range of crops, with lettuce being the main summer crop, supplying the wholesale markets in London.

After many successful years, it was decided to move away from vegetable growing and to enter the garden centre market. A suitable site was found at the Four Winds nursery near Farnham.

At this stage, Roger, the son of Denys and Hilary, joined the company and together they built the new Forest Lodge Garden Centre, which opened in February 1981. 

Forest Lodge enjoyed great success from the start and increased rapidly in size over the early years, with substantial extensions in 1984 and 1988.

The garden centre received much recognition from its customers, but also within the garden centre trade and was awarded in its inaugural year, the title of the Best Garden Centre in the U.K. in 1991.

Also in 1991 the company recognised the increasing demand for larger plants and opened Garden Style, a specialist nursery, supplying both the retail and wholesale markets.

The company further expanded in 1996 with the acquisition of Birdworld, the bird park and gardens, which is a well known and popular tourist attraction, as well as being a much respected part of the zoological community.

Although trading as three different divisions, the company is run as one business from its Head office, situated between Forest Lodge and Birdworld.

A major reason for our success has been through the development of a great team of people throughout the company. In 1981, we employed 8 full time and 7 part time employees and this has gradually grown to currently over 150 people employed by the company. Many of these people have worked within the company for more than 20 years.
We employ a large number of college age students, working at the weekend, offering many of them their first employment. We also offer work experience placements in all areas of the company and have a team of volunteers working mainly within Birdworld.

Roger Head says “We fully recognise the vital role that everyone in the company contributes to our success and feel proud of our team and their achievements.”

Forest Lodge Garden Centre is part of a family business, which includes Birdworld and Garden Style