Centre Street

Garden

Centre Street Garden is at the intersection of Centre Street and T.J. Dolan Drive, east of John Street.  Traveling south on John Street, the garden is the first left turn after crossing the Avon River Bridge.  There is ample parking on T. J. Dolan or Centre Street. 

 

 Centre Street Garden is just a short walk from the Catharine East and Father Corcoran Iris Gardens. 

The garden is an attractive feature of the nearby residential neighbourhood. 

Photo: Dennis Rawe

Centre Street Garden began as a memorial to Clifford Biggin, who died in 1982. His wife, Lorna, requested memorial donations to Stratford and District Horticultural Society, of which she was a long-standing member.

 

Architect Terry Marklevitz designed the garden in the late 1980s to simulate two ponds with a rocky stream tumbling between them. The basic design remains, although plantings have changed over the years.  The garden is maintained by members of Garden Stratford (Stratford and District Horticultural Society).

Photo: Doug Reberg

Lorna lived for many years after Clifford’s death.  When she died in 2010, the Biggin family commissioned a memorial bench to them both. 

The garden was a very appropriate memorial, because Clifford and Lorna had a long-standing pattern of nightly walks that nearly always passed the site.

Photo: Doug Reberg

Spot-It

The mid-summer garden resembles a meadow with daisies, yarrow, yucca and poppies.

 

What can you spot?

Photo: Doug Reberg

The Avon River, just across T. J. Dolan Drive, is an added attraction.  John Street Dam is said to be a good spot to catch bass, perch, and trout (the river is stocked each year for the Optimist Trout Derby).  Opinions vary about eating fish caught from the Avon River1, but fishing here is a pleasant way to spend a summer afternoon.

Avon River fishermen should also expect the occasional catfish.  This one was definitely catch-and-release.

Photo: Doug Reberg