|Article by Douglas Ashby for Parish Magazine, August 1999
Today much pleasure is derived from visiting beautiful gardens: some laid out in the days when families of means could employ several gardeners whose expertise and dedication ensured their efforts would be enjoyed by succeeding generations.
The Hall. A house has probably stood on this site since the 14th century when it was the home of the powerful
The Parish Award Map of 1803 shows the three medieval fishponds in the grounds and an avenue of trees extending eastwards from the house. A few of these trees survive but many succumbed to Dutch elm disease some years ago.
The garden on the south side retains much of its layout of the 19th century with its long lines of yew hedges and herbaceous borders enclosed by little box hedges. The old walls still retain metal name plates of fruit trees long since gone. The Pear Walk still remains and an ancient Mulberry tree manages to bear fruit each year.
At the end of the gravel walk between the yew hedges one has a long vista looking towards the house with its gables and mullion windows. Over the drawing room the bedroom window of unusual arched design, probably opened on to a balcony from where a past generation could have looked out over an Elizabethan parterre garden. There is no explanation for the different raised levels in the spacious lawns. If only history could speak!!
On the raised east lawn used to stand an enormous walnut tree. (Click here to read memories of evacuee Wynne Malpass)
In 1958 a competition was organised by a timber company to find the oldest walnut tree in the
About the year 1700,
An old faded photograph shows the three daughters of the Revd. P B Newman (rector 1872 1895) in this avenue.
There were three tennis courts and of course garden parties abounded in those days, and on Burton Feast Sunday the Britannia Silver Bank always played when parishioners and their relatives would enjoy strolling and chatting in such delightful surroundings.
The sad demise of the house is now an unhappy memory. All that remains is the datestone (A.D.1750) now in the churchyard propped up against the Manor House wall, and the beautiful panel of armorial stained glass that hangs in the middle window of the south aisle of the church and once formed part of the staircase window which was saved by
The site of the house is thought to be medieval and was possibly moated. This would account for the undulations in what is perhaps the most charming garden in the parish. During the time of Mr and
The original garden was only the width of the house and extended down the
One dominant feature of the old garden was the huge Wych Elm that stood on the top lawn, but sadly had to be felled in later years because it became unsafe.
There are other gardens worthy of mention which must be reserved for a future article.