Stephen Cox Garden Trust is a Registered  Charity (number: 1174239)





 1. Registration.      2.General Purpose.        3.Pubic Benefit.      4. Goals & Activities.    5.Means.         6. Ethos & Overview.      7.Legal Form of Entity.    8. HMRC       9.Trustees & Advisers.      10. Community Projects.    11. Society fo Friends.                    12. Trust Administration.  13. Board of Trustees


Structure of the Trust

1. Registration As Charity

The Charity Commission approved the Trust as charitable in purpose according to the laws of England and Wales. The Stephen Cox Garden Trust was entered onto the Register of Charities on 14th.August 2017 (#1174239) as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (C.I.O). The stated and approved Objects of the Charity being:

1. To advance education in the subjects of horticulture and conservation in particular but not exclusively by providing study courses, training placements and workshops.

2. Such charitable purposes for the public benefit as are exclusively charitable according to the laws of England and Wales as the trustees may from time to time determine.

2. General Purpose

This ancillary document further explains its work to enhance & cherish the garden, conserve the library, and be of benefit to the local community and public.

The General Purpose, Public Benefit,  Goals,  Activities, and Means shall be as follows: To offer charitable programmes of education, horticulture, wildlife, and heritage, for the enrichment of students across Britain and Europe and the improvement of human well-being in general based upon the founder's garden, library and teachings.

3. Public Benefit

A. General Public Benefit

i) By helping people learn about and appreciate their local landscape and wildlife.

ii) By providing study courses and training placements, workshops,

iii) By having open days as and when circumstances permit.

iv) By teaching skills on horticulture and conservation.

v) By providing a garden for study, etc.

vi) By raising awareness of conservation methods & needs in domestic gardens.

vii) By offering free access to the private reference library to individual scholars and students by appointment.

viii) By working with charitable & governmental agencies (such as those helping people overcome their barriers to education and employment; young offender reparation, etc).

B. Individual Benefits

(i) By providing skills to individuals. This will also: (a) enhance social, communication, leadership and teamanship skills, and (b) improve career prospects and strengthen their stake in society.

(ii) By helping individual scholars with research projects.

(iii) By helping local students with their studies via access to our library.

(iv) By enriching the living experience of individuals via deeper understanding of horticulture, wildlife, social responsibility, citizenship, landscape and local traditions, environment & conservation.

(v) By offering skills and insights into: horticulture, conservation, art & design, history, crafts & d.i.y.

(vi) By providing residential study placements for European students froage 18-27.

4. Goals & Activities


1. To maintain and improve the garden and its plant collections.

2. To develop new projects and facilities therein.

3. As and when finances circumstances permit offer: (i)Open days. (ii)Lectures/events 

4. To encourage lectures & talks on relevant subjects.

5. To encourage activities for The Friends of the Garden.

6. To run wildlife workshops for local people when circumstances permit.

7. To provide training & study Placements for young persons to learn gardening skills & wildlife care, and tuition in related subjects.

8. To help raise public awareness of wildlife issues & encourage others to cherish landscape and wildlife.

9. To help facilitate educational publications on subjects relevant to the Trust.

10. To encourage awareness of the spiritual garden philosophy of Stephen Cox.

11. To conserve the teachings and writings of Stephen Cox.

12. To undertake research of specialist topics.

13. To be an educational resource for the local community.

14. To nurture a love of Nature, Wildlife and Gardening for local people, and the public in general.

15. To develop wildlife habitats/sanctuaries in the garden and to encourage the same in the local community.

16. To also undertake wildlife audits in the garden and the local environment and lodge sightings with Wiltshire Biological Records Office.

17. To maintain and extend the Library .

18. To maintain a publicly accessible Website.

19. To undertake other educational and cultural activities and events providing these in no way contradict the ethos of the trust and do not involve financial risk or liability.

20. To provide a teaching resource for local young people wherein the values of : education, self-improvement, community & citizenship, heritage & traditions, responsibility to the environment, protection of other creatures can be conveyed.


1. To encourage individual donations from the public.

2. To offer access for private visiting groups with voluntary entry donations

3. Modest plant sales .

4. To seek business sponsorship and donations.

5. To apply for grants.

6. To have a subscription society called The Garden Friends.

7. Fund raising events and occassional publication of small books.

5. Means to Achieve Goals and Activities

1. Designate the Founder as 'C.E.O. responsible for day to day running of the garden & the Trust.

2. For Stewards to be appointed ad hoc to voluntarilly.

3. For Assistants/Specialists to be appointed ad hoc to voluntarilly help run and teach the workshops, wildlife audits etc.

4. For individual Students age 18+ to be appointed ad hoc as Garden Volunteers to help maintain the garden whilst also receiving free of charge tuition and training.

5. For other part time and voluntary persons over the age of 18 to be appointed as voluntary Staff/Officers to run specialist events, projects, or generally help as the need arises.

6. To create residential study placements for students age 18-27 from various countries.

6. Ethos & Overview

The Trust seeks to maintain & improve the unique garden; conserve the library; & the art works & teachings/writing of Stephen Cox. The Trust and its founder also serves the local community with charitable programmes and teaching .

But it also offers on a broader perspective appreciation of and insights into heritage, history, philosophy, wildlife, body-mind harmony, conservation, art & culture for the improvement of human well-being.

The unusual GARDEN (which has been described by Lord Lansdowne as "an exciting space") includes: Orchard, Fish Pond, Waterfall, Beach, Statues, Woodland, Vegetable garden, Lawns, Hedges, Moorish courtyard, Herbarium, 12 free standing Fountains, various flower collections/rooms (e.g. Alpines, Dianthus, Dwarf Conifers, Fuchsias, Begonias, Exotics, Acers, Specimen Trees, and Cottage garden), Summerhouse/teaching room, 18 seating areas, Gymnasium, Greenhouse, Patios, as well as paths and lawns and 7 large Pergola Arches (see Guide: document 6). It also has a Library of several thousand items; and a collection of Art works created by Stephen Ben Cox, additional to many teaching programmes, courses and guides created by him. The goals of the Trust as set out in its Constitution are to conserve, improve and maintain this Garden together with its Library, Stephen’s collection of art work as well as his writing and teachings. It engages in a number of charitable educational activities and community project (see separate documents). It is establishing Placements to help young people and give them work experience. (see Studes page) As a local charitable educational trust its guiding principles are : (a) for the public benefit without discrimination. (b) seeking to aid human improvement and well being. (c) whilst encouraging an understanding and respect for Nature and Wildlife and engage in community projects which will enhance this. (d) the above also being fulfilled by projects and activities which will conserve the garden, the library and art collection.

© 2017

7. Form of Entity

1. Charitable Incorporated Organisation

The Trust is recognised by the Charity Commision as a charity.

The Trust's legal form of entity is that of a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (C.I.O.) registered in England & Wales.  (Registration number 1174239, entered in the Register of Charities in 14th. August 2017).   

It is run according to its governing document approved by the Commision. It is overseen by its Board of Trustees.

2. Customs and Excise

Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs duly recognised the Trust as a charity for tax purposes on 22nd.February 2018. The Trust is also thus enabled to claim Gift Aid.

8. Trustees, & Advisers


The Board of Trustees consists of twelve persons each with voting rights and powers as per the Trust's constitution.

They advise and help guide and support the Founder & C.E.O. (Stephen Ben Cox) in his work of managing and developing the Trust so that it may adhere to its constitution and principles.


The Trust, additional to its registered Board of Trustees and ex-officio trustees or Council of Advisers looks forward to being joined in due course by various honourary officers such as: Honourary President, and Vice-Presidents.

These are honorific positions and have no work or responsibilities as regards the running of the Trust. They receive copies of the accounts and the c.e.o's quarterly reports. They attend the A.G.M.  and may attend Board meetings should they so wish.


There is an advisory Council consisting of specialists acting as consultants/advisers/co-opted trustees.There is no limt as to size.

Advisers: (i) act in a private capacity. (ii) may attend Trustees Board meetings. (iii) may not vote or make any decisions. (iv)  have no responsibilities or powers. (v) act in voluntary capacity so the Founder and Trustees may refer for specific information or professional reference. (vi) are chosen for their specific knowledge and skills in a particular topic.

They are specialists/practitioners in such areas as:

Local affairs;   Environment; Marketing;   Legal;   Secondary Education;   Higher Education; Law&Order;   Wildlife;   Management; Local government;   Media;   Ecology;   Horticulture;   Accountancy;   Social services; Local groups/communities;   Health & safety; Landscaping/design/d.i.y.

9. Community Projects

Gardening combines many aspects of what I feel is best about civilisation and human enterprise. It has been a mammoth crusade to bring my garden from a field to where it is today. Being an expert and passionate gardener himself Lord Lansdowne knows what is involved: he calls this garden "an exciting space" and says he hopes it will inspire others. I hope the garden can help others such as: 

1. Workshops: on wildlife.

2. Education: A range of Placements & Courses (see full list on Studies page)

3. PrivateTours: Garden tours for small groups by appointment.

4. Schools: Visits for school art or nature projects/classes under teacher supervision.

5. Young Offenders & Young Unemployed & Young Adults With Learning Difficulties: Skill learning opportunities, teamanship, confidence building, education enhancement

6. Audits: A start/finish base for the day for community wildlife audits/local walks.

7. Garden bird watch..

8. Big butterfly count  Come and help with the audit. 

9. Talks by various wildlife, gardening, conservation, and environment groups.

10. Bees: There is space in the emergent woodland area to establish a Apiary.

11. Environmental Studies: Understanding the local  landscape, ecology, wildlife. 

12. Local Elderly : Visits (with staff supervision) for residents of retirement homes. 

13. Work Study Placements: For individual via local colleges.

14. Garden Open Days as and when circumstances permit. 

15. Meditation : Nature & healing; archetypes; garden heritage; sacred spaces; spirituality; the Green Man; non--human personhood & rights; and other tutorials & workshops.

Donations Welcomed

The garden is not regularly funded or sponsored. It relies entirely on donations (incl. at open days). BUT you could  help right now.

Please note that all payments made by this method are transmitted automatically to our authorised UK bank account of the Tust and so can only be used for the purposes for which the Trust has designated.

Payment can be in any amount of your choice.




Press 'Donations Button' above. This will take you directly to our dedicated secure Paypal page (you can donate via Paypal or all major Credit Cards)


1. Click on the link above and you will be taken to a secure Paypal site to make a donation.

2. Select your method of payment (e.g. Paypal or Credit card).

3. Enter the amount you wanted to donate (if one off payment then leave next box unticked).

4. Either click Paypal (if you have an account with them to make payment that way) or click 'continue' next to the credit card icons to make payment that way.


Thank you!!

10. Society of Friends

Please consider becoming a Friend of The Garden (member). This is the community society to help support the garden but also further education and friendship, mutual support and help protect wildlife.

There is a nominal annual subscription of only £10 (£5 for those under 18).

Friends have the advantage of the following:

1. invitation to the annual private viewing;    

2. access to the reference Library;    

3. garden picnics;  

4. private tours;    

5. visits to historic sites and gardens;  

6. Lectures;    

7. Wildlife walks;

8. Photography & painting exhibition;      

9. Nature watch/local species count;      

10. Workshops in The Garden;    

11.  Fund raising events;    

12. Art lessons in The Garden;  

13. Wildfood Event.  

14. There is also a Newsletter by email.

11. Trust Administration


1. Staffing:

a) The Trust will have no paid staff. It will have unpaid volunteers, students helpers, members.

2. Running/Responsibility:

Stephen Ben Cox has full responsibility/authority for the day to day running of the Trust in respect of Garden, Library, Art works, education.

3. Business:

The Trust is strictly non-commercial, will not engage in any share dealing, or business activity . Except in so far as funds may be raised by various means as stated. All funds to be used exclusively for the goals as outlined in its Deed/Constitutional Document.

4. Finances.

a) All funds received shall be placed in the bank account.

b) Stephen Ben Cox is the sole signatory (subject to any limitations set by the Board).

c) Accounts shall be produced quarterly for Trustees.

d) Trustees may see a copy of current bank statements at any time. 

e) The Trust will not: have an overdraft, accrue debt, borrow, overspend.

5. Friends/Subscribers

a) The Friends/subscribers of the Trust ('associate members') may have responsibility for such matters as visits; events; lectures; picnic; local nature audit.

b) Annual fee shall be nominal e.g. £10. (£5 students/or under 18).

c) There will be an AGM of the Trust & Friends (preceded by Trustees meeting).

6. Independence

a) The Trust is strictly non political/non religious and shall have no dealings/association/ links/membership thereto. 

a2) Neither may it become a part of another organisation. 

b) Neither it or its assets can be bought, sold, broken up by anyone else except with regards to copies of writings, art work etc.

c) It will not act as an agent or representative for any other body.

d) Neither Trustees nor Friends shall have the authority to speak on behalf of or represent the Trust except by prior agreement with Stephen Ben Cox.

e) No other person or persons may set up branches or subsidiaries in the name of the Trust or claim authorisation thereto.

12. Board of Trustees

The  Board helps ensure the Trust's principles are maintained, and help protect and promote its interests.  Trustees can help organise specific aspects of the Trust in a voluntarilly if they wish. The role is voluntary and has no financial or other liability.

Rules of Trustees Board

1. There will be a minimum of one meeting per year.

2. The Trustees do not have to deal with day to day running of the Trust. 

3. This is devolved to the Founder Trustee (CEO/Managing Trustee) who managesthe Trust support of volunteers.

4. The Trustees can help on projects/events if they so wish.

5. Trustees have opted for the condition whereby there is no  financial liability at all for Trustees  (as per the Charity Commission option in the foundation model for Charitable Incorporated Organisation).

6. Trustees do not receive a salary.

7. A Trustee should declare at a meeting any personal interest which might conflict with his/her neutrality on any particular vote.

8. A Trustee unable to attend a meeting can designate a Trustee to vote for him and can send his views which must be read at the meeting, noted & taken cognisance of.

9. A Trustee must be of the minimum age of 16 (as per C.I.O. regulations).

10. There will be at least one young peoples Trustee(s)

11. Trustees may co-opt to their number a temporary additional Trustee with no voting rights but appointed for a limited purpose (e.g. specialist advice during a project).

12. Any Trustee can call for an emergency meeting of the Board.

13. Trustees may view the bank statements and accounts at any time during the year.

14. Trustees will receive a report quarterly of the activities/progress of Trust.

16. Trustees shall be informed of Volunteers assisting the Managing Trustee.

17. The Trustees may set a financial limit on the Managing Trustee for any cheques/ transactions etc requiring only one signature.

18. The Trustees should note and approve in the interests of security and good governance the CEO's quarterly Accounts.

19.Trustees may call for the Managing Trustee(CEO) to give explanation on any matter which they feel requires consideration or further detail.

Vacancies on the Trustees Board.

There are 7 Trustees at present. There will be a maximum of 12. There are currently  3 young people age 16-26 on the Board.

The position of an Honourary President is also anticipated.


The garden is private and is not open to the public on a daily basis. The Trust and the Garden is not a business or commercial enterprise and is strictly not-for-profit. It is a private educational Trust serving charitable objectives for the public good as defined by Charity Law in England and Wales. However in the interest of education and public benefit and to help enable others appreciate its work Stephen Ben Cox invites schools/gardening clubs/w.i's and other groups to arrange a private tour of his garden by prior appointment (the private visits season 2019 is: 10June to 28 July). The Trust (registered charity number: 1174239) is unfunded except for donations. All income is used entirely to support the work and goals of the Trust. Stephen Ben Cox, the Trustees and Volunteers work unpaid. The Trust is seeking business sponsors to support the goals and activities of the Trust. Individual donations are also gratefully received .

Any opportunity, event, facility or activity listed is philanthropic and offered in a private capacity in a spirit of good will for the benefit and enrichment of society. No project or activity or anything published on this website grants any rights or assumptions of private access, or any other rights to either property or possession thereon or therein.

All visitors, volunteers, students, etc assume full personal responsibility for any accident/injury/ damage/loss to themselves or their possessions. Any visitor/volunteer/ student etc visits/partakes of their own volition and at their own risk. No claims will be accepted. Visitors should take note with regards to such things as: uneven ground, spiky/thorny plants, deep water, loose rocks & walling, slippery paving etc Students and volunteers must accept all our guides/terms produced for their well-being, health and safety.