Get Happier Outdoors at the Rural Activities Garden Centre

Monday 11 March, 2024: Help to build a bug hotel or take an informative tour of Hillingdon Council's community garden centre as part of a new London-wide festival celebrating health and nature.

A view of spring plants for sale at the RAGC
The Rural Activities Garden Centre (RAGC) on West Drayton Road in Hillingdon, is hosting the events as part of the Happier Outdoors Festival which runs across the capital from Monday 18 to Wednesday 27 March.

The initiative London's amazing natural spaces, and the equally amazing people who work in them to help others, with most activities being free to attend.

On Mondays through to Fridays, at 9.30am and 2pm there will be hour-long sessions to build a giant bug hotel that will permanently reside on the site once complete. Suitable for all ages, pop down and help with the design, collecting materials and construction of the hotel.  

Anyone interested in volunteering or work experience at the RAGC is also welcome to attend daily guided tours, from Monday to Friday, at 11am and 2pm. Come along and meet the staff, see all the plants and animals on site and find out about the various opportunities on offer.

Other activities taking place in Hillingdon as part of the festival include orchard and volunteering sessions at Cranford Park (23 and 27 March) and a Mindful Walk at Eastcote House Gardens on Monday 25 March.

To book a place at any of these activities, or find out more, visit

Cllr Eddie Lavery, Hillingdon Council's Cabinet Member for Residents' Services, said: "We're committed to creating a greener future and key to that is enabling people to connect with nature and the outdoors.

"There are proven benefits to people's health and wellbeing from spending time in nature and in a borough like ours with lots of green space there are plenty of opportunities to experience those benefits.

"We're delighted to be hosting events for the Happier Outdoors Festival and once people visit our fantastic garden centre, I'm sure they'll return."

The RAGC also has all you'll need for your spring planting, from bedding to shrubs, as well as planters and gift ideas for Easter. If you just fancy a bit of fresh air, or want to take the kids somewhere new, as well as an abundance of greenery, the site also has canaries and other birds, large fish in its pond and free-ranging chickens that produce eggs you can buy.

Find out more at

The Happier Outdoors Festival is being delivered by charitable, grassroots and government organisations across London, in partnership with Natural England, the government's advisory body on England's natural environment.

Find out more about local events and activities in Hillingdon visit


Page last updated: 11 Mar 2024