Will Smithson
Gardens Illustrated|October 2017

An epiphany in New Zealand led to a career change for former recruitment consultant Will Smithson. He’s now head gardener at South Wood Farm, designed by Arne Maynard

Earliest gardening memory

I remember spending hours with my grandma on her farm, walking through the hay meadows and asking her to name all the different types of flowers and grasses.

Have you always worked as a gardener?

I used to be an account manager for an IT recruitment company. I left after three years and moved to New Zealand with my now wife and, stunned by the beauty of the country, realised that whatever job I did next absolutely had to be outdoors. On my return I studied for my RHS qualifications at evening classes, and started work at Yeo Valley Organic Garden.

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