Despite the rain, the annual Markyate Plant Sale raised a record-breaking £6,985 for The Hospice of St Francis, beating last year’s record by £700.

Hundreds of supporters spent the morning browsing the thousands of plants in bloom and being mystified by a magician’s table tricks.

Even without the usual musical entertainment, which had to be cancelled at the last minute due to concerns over water damage to electrical equipment and instruments, the plant sale was an overwhelming success.

Ian Bradley, organiser said: "This year’s show was the wettest ever and yet, measured by the donation it made to the Hospice of St Francis, by far the most wonderful.

"It can only be the combination of the skills and dedication of the volunteer team, whose crop of high quality plants in bloom was presented with a smile as wide as the garden itself. The determination of our customers to support us come rain or shine is admirable and heart-warming."