The Fortescue Garden Trust was established by the Fortescues in 1961 with the stated objectives to provide a garden for:

  • Public access and enjoyment
  • Leadership in Horticultural Innovation & Excellence
  • Education & Training

Today a Board of Trustees oversees The Garden House but is supported by a team working on-site each day to help deliver the stated objectives.

Maria Outram

Maria Outram

Operations Manager

Maria reports directly to the Chair of Trustees and is supported in her role by other Heads of Departments:

  • Nick Haworth – Head Gardener
  • Michelle Deane – Accountant
  • Natalie Parkinson – Cafe Manager
  • Kerry Gibbins – Visitor Reception and Plant Sales 
  • Salema Cornick – Events Co-Ordinator
  • David Milburn –  Garden Foreman
Nick Haworth

Nick Haworth

Head Gardener

“At the age of 24 after  graduating from Exeter Art college with Fine Art degree I was unemployable! The DSS offered me employment training for one year  and I was lucky enough to get a placement at National Trust Killerton whilst also undertaking a City and Guilds in Amenity Horticulture. After that year I spent just over a year working for the National Trust at Saltram House, before moving on to Kew where I worked on the Order Beds for three years. 

I then moved back to Devon and worked in a private garden Redlap House near Dartmouth for several years before getting the Head Gardeners job at National Trust Greenway at the beginning of its restoration. In 2013 I leapt at the chance of being the Head Gardener of the Garden House as it was, and still is, one of the most exciting gardens I have ever visited.”

Nick reports directly to the Horticultural Trustees and is supported in his role by a team of garden volunteers, two horticultural students and Garden Foreman, David Milburn.


Join our Team

Job vacancies – click here


Volunteer with us…

Join our Team and help us grow!

As a charity we rely on the generosity and time given by our many volunteers.  Whatever your age, skills or background we are always happy to discuss any expertise you may be able to offer.

Volunteers work across all sectors – garden, café, plant sales, visitor reception, events, maintenance team and within the office.

Ideally we are looking for 1 day per week (10am-4pm) but can be flexible around you and your other commitments.

As a volunteer, you will receive:

  • Full guidance and training 
  • Free annual entry to the garden for you and a guest
  • Free entry to our partner gardens: Trebah & Coleton Fishacre
  • 50% entry to our other partner gardens: Dartington Hall and gardens, Bishops Palace  & Hestercombe house and gardens
  • Free sandwich/soup lunch when volunteering
  • 20% discount in our cafe
  • 20% discount in our plant sales

If you have any skills and time to share, we’d love to hear from you! 

Please get in touch 01822 854769 or email:

or alternatively fill in the form below:


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