SPRING has truly sprung at the award-winning Exbury Gardens in the New Forest.

After one of the longest, coldest and wettest winters in living memory the 200-acre attraction on the banks of the Beaulieu River is now a blaze of colour.

Visitors have been touring the grounds and taking a trip on the steam railway, with head gardener Thomas Clarke giving talks on the gardens.

The attraction is arguably at its peak at this time of year.

Visitors can admire a variety of brightly coloured tulips in the herbaceous garden and a carpet of bluebells in Home Wood, plus blossom trees in bloom outside Exbury House.

Owned by a branch of the Rothschild family, Exbury has been welcoming visitors since the 1950s.

Plant-lovers can either stroll around the gardens or board one of the stream trains operating out of Exbury Central station.

Over the years passengers have included the Queen, the Prince of Wales and his wife Camilla.

The train has also conveyed acting royalty in the form of Dame Judi Dench and Dame Maggie Smith.