Number 10 garden opened to public
The garden of Number 10 Downing Street has been thrown open to the public as part of an event to open up green spaces in the capital.
The sun broke through the clouds above London just as 25 competition winners were given a tour of the Prime Minister's plot as part of the Open Garden Squares Weekend.
The walled garden, which is shared by residents of both Number 10 and 11, is also home to many birds, bees and other wildlife, while Larry the Downing Street cat is a regular visitor.
Gardener Will Tremorin said the L-shaped plot, which amounts to around half an acre, has been amended over the years according to the wishes of the different Prime Ministers who have lived at Number 10.
The rose area was an idea of Margaret Thatcher's while John Major suggested the climbing and creeping roses that drape the hanging ropes that were fixed in above them, he said.
Meanwhile the raised bed where up to 10 varieties of vegetable grow at a time was introduced by Gordon Brown's wife Sarah.
He said: "Her thoughts were that anyone can grow vegetables, even in a very small plot. The Browns were instrumental in developing the environmental sustainability of the garden."
The outdoor space, which he described as a suntrap, features a large lawn surrounded by dozens of flower beds and a slate path. A small pond is home to around 30 goldfish, frogs and newts, while a kestrel's nest has also been spotted in the grounds.
One of those visiting the garden was Frank Bush, 68, who had travelled all the way from Usk, Monmouthshire, just to see it.
He said: "It's incredible. It's so peaceful and quiet, it's like an oasis in the middle of London. I think if I was ever Prime Minister I would escape out here very often."