England: RHS Garden Bridgewater and Gardens of the North West
One of the largest gardening projects in Europe, RHS Garden Bridgewater has established itself as one of the most popular gardens in the north-west of England. This once in a generation project saw the Royal Horticultural Society take inspiration from the heritage of the site and transform it into a world-class garden, while also delivering a programme of community outreach and education activities, volunteering and training.
Based on an overall design by leading landscape architect Tom Stuart-Smith, highlights include one of the largest walled gardens in the UK, beautifully landscaped grounds, living plant collections and horticultural trials. As it matures it is sure to establish itself as one of the foremost garden attractions in the North of England.
We also take the opportunity to visit some of the best gardens in the North West, beginning at Trentham Estate in Staffordshire, where the contemporary revival of the famous Italian Gardens was also led by Tom Stuart-Smith. After our visit to Bridgewater we visit, by way of contrast, a nearby private garden with a peaceful riverside setting.
Next day we travel to Dunham Massey, a great plantsman's garden full of native favourites and exotic treasures set around an elegant Georgian mansion, followed by Tatton Park, whose gardens have developed over 200 years yet retain much of their Edwardian character. Before departing for home we visit Arley Hall, which preserves the atmosphere of a garden kept for its own delight. The pair of herbaceous borders is one of the great garden sights of England.
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What to Expect
- Special visit to RHS Garden Bridgewater, the newest addition to the RHS stable
- Italian style at Trentham Estate
- Special access to a privately-owned garden
- Dunham Massey and Tatton Park, two of the foremost gardens in Cheshire
- Arley Hall’s famous double herbaceous borders