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Agenda

News articles from the GHS membership: what’s going on in garden history, parks and gardens. They do not necessarily represent the viewpoint of the Society.

March 15th, 2013

The Kymin, a remarkable cultural landscape.

Seven hundred feet above Monmouth are the Kymin Rocks. From here there are views over ten counties and once one could see far down the Wye Valley to the Wyndcliffe and Piercefield. In the eighteenth-century there were those, encouraged by Gilpin’s Observations, who searched for stations from which picturesque views of the landscape could be seen or composed. For local landowners and the people of Monmouth there was no need to search, and their excursions into the countryside were not to satisfy the tyranny of the eye, they were just for fun.
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March 15th, 2013

Capability Brown Tercentenary, 1716 to 2016

Exciting momentum is building towards planning national events, portable travelling exhibitions and sharing more landscapes with a wider public and the younger generations. About 150 delegates attended from all the key organisations involved in the garden world, and also including Visit Britain and Visit England, and many owners and managers of Brown sites, and representatives of many county gardens trusts from around the country.
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March 15th, 2013

‘The true taste of beauty’: Gardens in the Letters of Samuel Molyneux

In October 1712 Samuel Molyneux (1689–1728) travelled to London from his home in Dublin to be enrolled as a Fellow of the Royal Society. Being the only child of the celebrated astronomer, philosopher and constitutional writer William Molyneux, (1656–98) and in his capacity as secretary to the Dublin Philosophical Society, the young Samuel had long nurtured good relations with the intellectual elite. Once in the capital he exploited these connections to seek audiences with the foremost collectors and connoisseurs of the day and to view their prized collections housed in ecclesiastical and secular buildings, historic royal palaces, parks and gardens.
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March 15th, 2013

The Designed Landscape at Trent Park, Middlesex:

English Heritage (EH) has recently commissioned the Garden History Society to conduct a London-based pilot scheme on a small number of at risk designed landscapes, whereby, using primarily desk-based research, the GHS provides EH with the background research needed to encourage owners to engage with their site and develop a conservation management plan. The first pilot site was the designed landscape at Trent Park (London Borough of Enfield), a site occupied by Middlesex University’s Trent Park Campus, until summer 2012. I was commissioned to undertake the study in June 2012. The report has been given to London Borough of Enfield in order to offer guidance on the role of the historic designed landscape within new use of the Campus.
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March 12th, 2012

New MA in Garden History at the University of Buckingham

To quote: The University of Buckingham is introducing as part of its London Programme a new research MA in Garden History which offers a unique opportunity to study the subject. Interest in British gardens and their history has never been greater than now.  Historic gardens and designed landscapes are a major part of [...]
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November 30th, 2011

New Conservation Work Opportunities with the Society

DEPUTY CONSERVATION OFFICER (ENGLAND) As part of the reorganisation of the Society’s conservation and planning work, we wish to appoint a part-time Deputy Conservation Officer for England. The Deputy Conservation Officer will work in close association with the Principal Conservation Officer and the Conservation Casework Manager in planning casework. The Deputy Conservation Officer will also be involved in [...]
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November 30th, 2011

Important update on GHS conservation work

We wanted to keep Members informed of important developments following our AGM in July at Keele, and that of the Association of Gardens Trusts at Oxford in September. Working Together The Working Together Feasibility Study Group, comprising GHS, AGT, the Garden Museum and the Parks & Gardens database (P&GUK), continues to discuss a possible way forward towards [...]
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November 30th, 2011

Site of John Evelyn’s Deptford garden under threat

Site of John Evelyn’s Deptford garden under threat The site of the house and garden at Sayes Court — John Evelyn’s London residence by the then Royal Dockyard at Deptford — is currently subject to a planning application from a property developer which would see the site of the garden built over. A small group of [...]
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September 7th, 2011

Recent GHS news, summer 2011

AGM report The Society’s AGM was held at Keele University on 22 July 2011. 70 members were present. Messrs. Peters Elworthy & Moore were appointed as the Society’s Independent Examiners. We are pleased to announce that Dominic Cole was re-elected to Council, and Patrick Eyres, Jeremy Rye and Michael Thompson were elected as members of the Council. Peter Hayden [...]
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September 7th, 2011

Villa Gregoriana at Tivoli: an overlooked ‘Sublime’ landscape

Kristina Taylor In the Non-Catholic cemetery in Rome, lying near Shelley’s grave, is a stone with a poignant inscription which reminds us of the dangers of trying to experience the thrills of sublime landscapes and why health and safety standards haunt our enjoyment of them: Sacred to the memory of Robert the eldest son of Mr. Robert [...]
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September 7th, 2011

‘Turn your Faces towards Rousham’

Mavis Batey This was the advice of Clary, the proud Rousham gardener who had laid out William Kent’s garden for General Dormer in 1737; it was also my advice to the Historic Buildings Council, over two hundred years after Clary’s letter, when acting as Secretary of The Garden History Society. We had approached them to consider [...]
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September 7th, 2011

In Praise of George London, c.1640–1714

Pat Bras We often see references to the splendid 17th-century nurseries of London & Wise at Brompton Park, London. They were used by royalty and many other important landowners who were ‘improving’ their estates. They supplied trees, shrubs, fruit trees and especially the newly introduced plants, mainly from North America. The formal designs of George London & [...]
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September 6th, 2011

Caldwell Tower by Uplawmoor

John West writes: Caldwell Tower in East Renfrewshire was recently featured in a Channel 4 television series about the restoration of a number of small historic buildings. The particular programme repeated the owner’s belief that his tower was built in the 15th century and was the last standing portion of a large mediaeval castle which stood [...]
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September 6th, 2011

in memoriam: Alix Wilkinson

Alix Wilkinson was an enthusiastic garden historian, intrepid traveller and cheerful, smiling friend and companion. To those who have travelled on garden history tours in Europe and the Near East she was a familiar figure. One of my first memories of Alix dates from a visit we made together to the Egyptian collection in the [...]
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September 6th, 2011

Keele Conference 2011

report by Dominic Cole and Charles Boot Continuing the tradition of holding these events regionally, to reach as many members as possible, we were at the University of Keele in Staffordshire, described by our guest speaker Dr Nigel Tringham (of the History department at Keele) as the ‘lost county’. Some 80 members attended. Our visits to [...]
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