Longstock Park Water Gardens
First stop of the day was Longstock Park Water Gardens, where Head Gardner Rob Ballard gave us some of history of how they were formed. In 1946 John Speden Lewis bought the water gardens and developed them three times their original size adding bridges and promontories. It took 6 years to dig out the ponds and with the aid of the 1st Head Gardener Jim Saunders they made up the layout as they went along.
After the death of John Stephen Lewis the gardens were left to the John Lewis Partnership and are now available to partners to visit with their families and friends.
The next garden of the day was Little Court a “tranquil country garden” that is set in the Hampshire downland. The garden has a number of sections starting close to the house with boarders and a large topiary yew.
And then with the weather getting colder and wetter it was on to the National Trusts Mottisfont Park where we had lunch and a couple of talks on the history of the house and its art.
The Dower House
The day was rounded off with a visit to The Dower House, Winchester, the special private nursing home concieved, built, owned and run by our host and EBTS memeber Mrs Judith Lywood. Dispite the worsening weather we were able to walk round the gardens of the truely remarkable nursing home. The evening reception and delightful dinner was a brilliant way to end the day that had been arranged by Judith and her General Manager Lisa Wood and for which we were all most grateful.
Pictures by Chris Poole & Belinda Rushjansen