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Guest Speakers: John Glenn
Meet the Experts
The Geometry of Formal Gardens

Garden Visits

Renishaw Hall

As well as the clipped hedging and great topiary pyramids, water played a significant role, with formal pools and the long view across the ha ha to the lakes. Weathered stone statues of mythological figures, including Diana and Neptune, point to the roots of this garden in Italian Classicism.

Melbourne Hall
A garden of great romance created in the French style of the 17th Century. One of the most remarkable features of the garden is the yew hedge clipped to follow its natural pattern of growth, here and there cut into niches for figures such as the playful cherubs. The main water feature of the garden is called the Great Basin. At its head is a magnificent blue and gold bird cage, a wrought iron confection created by Robert Bakewell of Derby for a mere £120.

Elvaston Castle
Perhaps the most impressive of the trio, Elvaston has a magical quality. We made special arrangements to enter through the original grand entrance, the Golden Gates ( believed to have been taken from Versailles) to the yew avenue and beneath the Moors Arch, a fanciful piece of topiary. This garden is one of the very first examples of an instant garden and one of the first to use golden yew.

Lunch was taken at Melbourne Hall, and the Grand Summer Draw produced prizes that included, entry to Sir Roy Strong’s garden, The Lasketts, guided tour of Rosemary Verey’s garden at Barnsley House and a clipped box spiral.
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