Meet Sue Sandle, our new Head of Development

Sue has recently joined the team and will be looking after fundraising for our Trust and leading on our vital Members and Patrons schemes.

Sue Sandle, Head of Development at Chiswick House and Gardens Trust. Image by Andre Pattenden.

Tell us a bit about yourself

I’ve come here from ArtsEd, another great Chiswick institution, where I was Director of Development & Marketing for six years. Prior to that I was Deputy Director of Development at the Donmar Warehouse Theatre, a role that followed several years working as a fundraising consultant whilst my children were small. I have gained great delight from gardens and heritage sites for many years (well, since I was about thirty and three quarters), so I am delighted to have the opportunity to put my expertise to use in a place that brings these two things together so brilliantly.

Tell us about your role at Chiswick House & Gardens Trust

The Trust is a charity, and we need to raise over three quarters of our income every year to help keep the gardens open as a place for everyone, every day. My role is to connect with people and organisations who appreciate these beautiful spaces and to identify the ways in which they can help us look after and share them for years to come.

My role includes looking after our Members and Patrons (and encouraging more people to support us this way!), securing grants for our brilliant work with community groups from across Hounslow and leading the fundraising campaign for our exciting capital plans.

What’s your connection to Chiswick?

As an Acton resident for over thirty years, I have been a regular visitor to the House and Gardens. Countless memories include lazy picnics with friends, scooping up toddlers intent on lake entry, breezy summer cricket matches and the delight of guests at the wonders of the House. I love the balance that the Trust maintains between history, beauty and everyday pleasure and I am looking forward to helping people to connect with everything that we have to offer.

What do you love about Chiswick House and Gardens? And have you got any tips?

I love that it is an everyday space for so many people; walkers, dog walkers, commuters, children on their way to school, families with young kids, runners (you name it), and that it is also a Grade I-listed landscape garden and house. What a mix! And a mix that anyone can enjoy, any day of year. I am delighted to be part of the team that helps to ensure that it stays that way.

My top tips include admiring the House against a sharp blue sky from the West Lawn. Strolling from the Rosary to the Italian Garden when the roses are out, a treat for all your senses. Trying an egg and watercress sandwich from the Colicci Cafe (the best I’ve ever had, and I love an egg and cress sandwich!). And visiting the Kitchen Garden, a beautiful and productive space, the heart of our work with community groups, and a place that looks different every day.

You can book tickets to the Kitchen Garden here. It’s open Thursday–Sunday from 11am to 4pm, until October. Our Members & Patrons enjoy unlimited free entry, and if you sign up soon, you can come and join the team for Summer Drinks there on 13 July. A wonderful introduction to the space and to the work that we do.

If you would like to chat to me, please do drop me at line at