Discover the English Garden at National Trust Hartwell House
18 Apr 2016
• Explore 90 acres of gardens landscaped by a contemporary of Capability Brown
• Take 10 chosen walks around the grounds discovering magnificent trees
• Celebrate Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown’s 300th Anniversary with afternoon tea
• Photograph the unique and historic garden buildings across the grounds
Visit England are inviting visitors to celebrate the English garden throughout 2016. What better way to celebrate than to combine a stay at one of England’s stately homes, sitting in over 90 acres of National Trust garden? Hartwell House’s gardens were landscaped by a contemporary of Capability Brown, with a lake spanned by a stone bridge, a ruined church and many 18th century statues and garden buildings. Hartwell House is the ideal base for a garden inspired break.
Once graced by Louis XVIII, exiled King of France, and today an Historic House Hotel of the National Trust, the Grade-I listed house, which has both Jacobean and Georgian facades, boasts some of England’s most stunning gardens. The designer of the gardens was probably James Gibbs, who certainly designed the garden buildings. By the middle of the 18th century most of the formality had been swept away and the garden was landscaped by a contemporary of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, one Richard Woods.
Guests can enjoy special walks around the grounds of the Historic House Hotel, with a copy of their Tree Map, to identify 10 prize specimens, from a Horse Chestnut and a London Plane tree to a Giant Sequoia (an 87- ft conifer which bears cones all year round).
Start at Lime Avenue, where guests look down an avenue of lime trees. Explore some 234 trees over a mile long. Budding arborists will also spot a large, shapely Walnut tree before you reach the Egyptian Well and Spring (a folly built in 1850). Walnut is highly prized by furniture makers for its fine, straight grained timber. By autumn you should see the tree covered in large edible, fruits.
Growing by the ice house in the park is a Cedar of Lebanon; and to the right of the house a magnificent Sycamore (the tree was originally introduced to this country by the Romans).
On the west lawn, guests will also spot four Tulip Trees (the glossy green leaves are tulip-shaped, turning a bright gold colour in autumn). And don’t miss the Chusan Fan Palm, introduced around 1850 from China.
Throughout the walks, guests encounter unique garden buildings and statues including the Gothic tower, a statue of Hercules and a portion of the statue of Marsya. The Canal Temple stands at the end of what used to be the Long Canal, the statues of Jupiter and Juno can be found here. The Rusticated Arch was moved to the garden’s southern perimeter and the Obelisk and William III’s Column are still to be found in the garden. The grounds also contain two all-weather tennis courts and a croquet lawn.
Head Chef Daniel Richardson uses herbs and produce from the extensive kitchen gardens across all menus at the hotel. Flowers are also picked in the grounds and used to fill Hartwell House with the great outdoors. The spring garden has been planted with snowdrops, daffodils, eranthis, primroses and anemones.
Visitors to Hartwell House can enjoy traditional afternoon tea. The large and historic drawing rooms provide an opulent setting for the delicate sandwiches, homemade scones and pastries served with fragrant teas or jazzed up with a Champagne cocktail. From £30 per person (cocktails from £7.50).
Special Event – Friday 20th May
Join Richard Wheeler who will give an insight into Richard Woods and Lancelot Capability Brown over a special dinner. From £75.00 per person with accommodation from £200.00 per room.
Royal Horticultural Society Luncheons – Wednesday 8th and Wednesday 22nd June
Join Hartwell House’s head gardener Richard Jones, to discover recent plantings and restoration and the lost flower garden of Lady Elizabeth Lee. From £31.00 per person.
Summer Garden Tour and Lunch – Friday 5th August
Richard Jones holds a guided tour across Hartwell’s grounds to view the many plants, shrubs and trees in bloom. From £30.00 per person.
Special Break – Capability Brown Break
Guests can explore Hartwell’s 92 acres of grounds as landscaped by Richard Woods, a contemporary of Capability Brown or perhaps visit the grounds at nearby Stowe or Blenheim Palace and view two of Brown’s lasting legacy. This break is from £310.00 per room per night based on two people sharing from Sunday to Thursday, and from £360.00 on Friday or Saturday, includes a £43.00 dinner allowance each in the main dining room, accommodation, wifi, breakfast, use of the Hartwell Spa and VAT.
Hartwell House, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP17 8NR, Tel:01296 747444
B&B priced from £205.00 per night based on two sharing a Court bedroom and £290.00 per night based on two sharing a bedroom in the main house