Cricket St Thomas gardens in May

This classic country house hotel is set in splendid parkland, with colourful gardens, lakes, and a unique woodland area. During our visit the rhododendrons and wisteria where magnificent. Filmed on 15 May 2018 at Cricket St Thomas near Chard, Somerset, UK.

The following stills are from the video.

Cricket St Thomas gardens in May Cricket St Thomas gardens in May Cricket St Thomas gardens in May

The Pillow Fight is a bronze statue by the local sculpture, John Robinson. The sculptures are said to have been inspired by his own grandchildren.

Camera: Sony RX100 V.

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Killerton House, National Trust property in Devon

Killerton is an 18th-century house near Exeter in Devon. In 1944 it was given to the National Trust by British politician Sir Richard Acland.

Sir Richard was was one of the founding members of the British Common Wealth Party. He was an advocate of public land ownership and he gave his Killerton and Holnicote estates to the National Trust out of principle, and also to ensure that the estates remained safe and unspoiled for all time.

The following stills are from the video.

Killerton House, National Trust, Devon

At the time this was the largest single acquisition in the Trusts history. With a total of 17,000 acres, the estates were estimated to be worth £250,000. That’s the equivelent of £4,000,000 in todays money. Sir Richard, who was then 36, said of his future “My income will depend solely on what I earn as an M.P. and a writer. I shall be a working man and nothing else.”

Killerton House, National Trust, Devon

The summerhouse was renamed ‘the bear’s hut’ because in the 1860’s it was used to house a black bear called Tom, which had been brought to Killerton by the 12th Baronet’s brother, Gilbert, on his return from Canada.

Killerton House, National Trust, Devon

Although the Killerton Estate came to the Trust in 1944, the house didn’t open to the public until 1978. In 1944 the house was cleared of furniture to make way for two evacuated schools. Post-war the house was used firstly as a hotel for the Worker’s Travel Association, who’s aim was to provide affordable holidays for working people and their families. Later it became a hall of residence for St Luke’s College of Education.

When the Trust opened the house to the public in 1978 there was little of the original furniture left.
The ground floor of the house has been re-furnished as it would have been in the early part of the 20th century, when the Acland family were still in residence.

There were no pictures to show what the bedrooms looked like. So when Killerton was offered a costume exhibition, it was decided to use the upstairs of the house for the displays. Since then they have always had a themed fashion exhibition on display.

Camera: Sony RX100 V.

Tyntesfield National Trust house and gardens

Tyntesfield is a Victorian Gothic Revival house near Bristol. The mansion was built in the 1830s. It was later bought by English businessman William Gibbs, whose huge fortune came from importing guano (bird droppings) used as fertilizer. In the 1860s Gibbs had the house expanded and remodelled. The architectural style selected for the rebuilding was a loose Gothic, combining many forms and reinventions, of the medieval style. The choice of Gothic was influenced by William Gibb’s Anglo-Catholic beliefs as a follower of the Oxford Movement. This movement advocated the revival of the medieval Gothic style, and “a return to the faith and the social structures of the Middle Ages”. We visited in May 2018.

The following stills are from the video.

Tyntesfield garden

In 2002 the Tyntesfield estate came up for auction following the death of its owner and the substantial death duties that became payable. Concerned with the demolition and desecration of various historic country houses in recent years, the National Trust launched a “Save Tyntesfield” campaign. It collected £8 million in just 100 days, with £3 million from the public plus two substantial anonymous donations of £1 million and £4 million. The Trust also received £17 million from the National Heritage Memorial Fund. The National Lottery earmarked a further £25 million for the major conservation work needed.

Tyntesfield walled garden

The National Trust purchased the house, the kitchen garden, and the park. Starting out with a staff of 30 volunteers in 2002, recently the total of employed and volunteer staff exceeded 600, this is more than the number engaged by any other National Trust property.

Tyntesfield National Trust

The initial conservation work focused around weatherproofing the house. The repair of the roof, including the restoration of the original bold red and black tiled geometric pattern. The entire property was rewired. Much of the original lead piping was replaced and a fireproofing scheme implemented. These initial works cost more than £10 million, much of which was raised through donations, via the “Save Tyntesfield” campaign, and the sale of lottery tickets to visitors.

At first the Trust had been reluctant to allow visitors to the house, while work was underway, especially taking into account the costs of Health and Safety requirements, and the delays these could cause to the essential preservation work. But the need for cash dictated the answer, and the Trust learnt that, through giving the public close access to the preservation work, they actually gave more additional donations as a result of seeing where their money was going, and how they were making a difference.

Camera: Sony RX100 V.

Ascott National Trust gardens

Ascott, Wing, Buckinghamshire is a half-timbered house originating from 1606, transformed by the Rothschilds in the late 19th century. The extensive gardens, are an attractive mix of the formal and natural with specimen trees, shrubs and beautiful herbaceous borders. We visited in August 2017.

The following stills are from the video.

Ascott National Trust gardens Ascott National Trust gardens Ascott National Trust gardens Ascott National Trust gardens

Stowe Gardens Buckinghamshire

The Stowe National Trust property in Buckinghamshire features gardening on the grandest scale. Picture-perfect views, winding paths, lakeside walks and temples create a timeless landscape, reflecting the changing seasons. Full of hidden meaning, the gardens were created as an earthly paradise and still cast their spell today. We visited in August 2017.

The following stills are from the video.

Stowe Gardens Buckinghamshire Stowe Gardens Buckinghamshire Stowe Gardens Buckinghamshire Stowe Gardens Buckinghamshire

Greys Court, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire – the gardens in August

We visited this National Trust property in August 2017. The Tudor-style house has a courtyard and gardens. This video features the large walled garden with its fortified tower built circa 1347. The walled garden is divided into separate areas featuring bedding plants, old-fashioned roses, shrubs, an area for ornamental fruit and vegetables and a maze without hedges.

The following stills are from the video.

Greys Court, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire gateway
Greys Court, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire sweetpeas
Greys Court, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire thistleGreys Court, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire apples

Grape vine in autumn

Autumn leaves and sunshine provide a wonderful photo opportunity. Our grape vine has turned magnificent shades of red and gold. When I looked out of the back room window and saw the vine glinting in the sunshine I know that I must take some pictures.

The vine grows on a trellis around the entrance to my greenhouse. It has numerous bunches of grapes this year but most of the grapes are tiny. The ripe ones are lovely to eat but they each contain a pip so are hard work. I am going to leave most of them for the birds.

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Gorgeous geraniums

We were browsing around our local garden centre when I spotted some attractive clay pots at a bargain price. There were five left and they quickly found their way into my trolley.

I had an idea they would look good on the wall surrounding our garden pond. But the question was what to put in them? The answer came when we passed a display of summer bedding plants – geraniums. That was back in the spring. Now the geraniums are putting on a beautiful display for us.

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Monet’s garden – the lily pond

Ten years after his arrival at his house in Giverny, Monet bought the piece of land neighbouring his property on the other side of the railway (now a road). The land was crossed by a stream, the Ru, which eventually runs into the River Seine. Monet had a small pond dug, in spite of opposition from the local farmers. They were afraid that his exotic plants would poison the water.

Later the pond was be enlarged to its present size. The water garden is full of meandering curves and shady areas. It was inspired by the Japanese gardens that Monet knew from the prints he collected.

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