Nicky Rowberry writes: I was hoping you could help me find out a bit more about my great grandfather James Brookes. He was head gardener at Totteridge Park between at least 1901 and 1906. He featured in “Garden Life (Illustrated) – A Practical Journal for Amateur Gardeners” in November 1903 in an article entitled “Famous Gardeners at Home”.
I also have two medals which he must have won for gardening of some kind. One says Awarded to Mr. J. Brookes October 29th 1902 and has a pair of hands shaking on the back with the words Well’s Motto. The other says “Presented by Dobbie & Co Royal Seed Growers & Florists” and just has “Won By” on the back, but his name was never engraved.
I would be particularly keen to know what he won the medals for. Also would any plans/photos still exist for Totteridge Park gardens – they were presumably significant enough to feature in the magazine? Do the gardens still exist today?