A Brief Introduction to the Remarkable Gertrude Jekyll

Jekyll’s planting schemes and their harmonious colour palettes, and use of traditional crafts, remain the quintessential essence of English-style.Read more

The life and landscapes of Humphry Repton

Humphry Repton, the last great landscape designer of the Georgian era, advised on some 400 schemes across a 27 year career. Repton filled the void left after the death of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown in 1783, and linked the 18th century landscape tradition with the gardenesque movement of the early Victorian era. Early Life Much of Repton’s life and career played out in the East of England. He was born in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk on 21 April 1752 and attendedRead more

How to lay out a garden: the legacy of Edward Kemp (1817 -1891)

Edward Kemp was one of the most prolific and influential landscape designers of the Victorian era. Read more

Early Colour Images of the English Garden

This month, we’re talking about the amazing English homes and gardens that represent or have witnessed some of the most important historic events.Read more

Allotmentitis: How Britain Dug for Victory

Allotmentswere born out of a national drive for self-sufficiency. Here we take a look at the history of allotments and their significance to our historic landscape.Read more

Not Just Green Spaces: 5 Buildings Designed by Capability Brown

His visionary landscape designs brought Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown lasting fame, punctuating the natural environment to this day with serpentine rivers, rich woodland and palatial views. But what many people forget about Capability Brown, is that he also designed buildings and monuments within his commissioned landscapes. Surviving examples are rare and often protected by listing. Here are 5 of the structures he is less famous for. The Burton Pynsent Column, Somerset Sometimes referred to as the Cider Monument, the 140ft columnRead more

A Brief Introduction to… Garden and Park Structures

Have you ever wondered about that grand mansion set into the hills of your local park or public garden? Perhaps there are the crumbling remnants of what looks like some kind of castle or fort? You may have considered where these structures came from and why they’re still there, existing in a seemingly original and potentially repurposed state. A large number of such structures are protected by listing, and when identified can tell a story about their locality and howRead more

6 Places that Inspired Alice in Wonderland

The surreal world of Wonderland has captured the imagination of little and big kids everywhere since Alice’s adventures were first published in 1865. The range of country-wide events to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the book are as eclectic and imaginative as Wonderland itself, from walking tours and Mad Hatter’s tea parties to interactive performances where the audience take on Alice’s journey and become part of the story.Read more

How do you protect a historic garden?

Patience Trevor is a former Senior Designation Adviser and reflects on her time setting up the first Register of Parks and Gardens 35 years ago.  In 1984 (under the Heritage Act 10982-4), we got the go-ahead to produce a Pilot Register of Historic Parks and Gardens, for the first time giving recognition to man-made, designed landscapes in the planning framework. Brief descriptions, similar to list entries at the time, covered the best-known sites in eighteen selected counties from Northumberland toRead more

Alston Moor: Buildings in a North Pennines Landscape

Matthew Whitfield is an Investigator in the Heritage Protection Department. He is involved with projects within the National Heritage Protection Plan, adding to public understanding of different aspects of historic buildings and areas. His next book is about English suburbs. Do you know where Alston Moor is? I confess that I didn’t before I started work on a book that aimed to shine a spotlight on this sparsely populated corner of upland England (if you don’t know the answer andRead more