MORE than 100 retired people and their families in Basingstoke enjoyed an opportunity to meet and greet celebrity gardener, Chris Beardshaw, at a special opening ceremony at McCarthy & Stone’s two Basingstoke developments.

On Monday Chris visited McCarthy & Stone’s Emma Court and Lady Susan Court in New Road and Southern Road, officially opening the developments and signed copies of his book 100 Plants that Almost Changed the World.

Jacqui Meenan, regional sales and marketing director for McCarthy & Stone, said: “We couldn’t have been more thrilled to have welcomed Chris to our Basingstoke developments.

“All the homeowners and guests really enjoyed spending the afternoon with him and asking questions about his brilliant gardening career.

“Despite no longer keeping their own gardens, many of our homeowners are still keen enthusiasts and like to keep their hands-in by creating their own potted creations, or enjoying the beautiful landscapes here at the development, so it was great for them to be able to get some quality tips for keeping their fingers-green in later life from an award-winner like Chris.”

Chris previously helped create an award winning garden for McCarthy & Stone at last year’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.

The garden was designed to help challenge pre-conceptions of later life whilst honouring the experiences and knowledge of the UK’s growing aging population.