A newly enlarged and refurbished restaurant has been given an award for its architecture.

The Stables serves the thousands of visitors who visit Wakehurst Place gardens in Ardingly every year.

Mid Sussex District Council has given the restaurant an award for excellence in conservation.

The restaurant is based in a Grade II-listed former stables block next to the gardens' Elizabethan mansion.

It has recently reopened following a £1 million refit.

Andy Jackson, who runs Wakehurst Place, said: "We are absolutely thrilled. I want us to become as well known for our food as for the vitally important global conservationwork we undertake here.

"The building work saw the start of a new era as far as catering at Wakehurst Place is concerned. Bricks and mortar are only the beginning. We have appointed new caterers and adopted a new ethos of freshly-prepared meals using locally-sourced ingredients where possible and supporting organic and Fair Trade producers."

Monday, September 5, 2005