Xmera / Garden History / Gardens: Loudon's Gloucestershire Gardens

Loudon's Gardens of Gloucestershire

From J. C. Loudon's Encyclopaedia of Gardening (5th edn., 1827), pp. 1074-5

* indicates that the garden was of 'established celebrity'.

Loudon's list of gardens was based on his own tour of England in 1804-6, so was somewhat dated by the time of publication.


GLOUCESTERSHIRE.A surface of 800,000 acres; elevated, hilly in many parts, and the climate cold; low, fertile, and humid, however, on the banks of the rivers, as in the Vale of Gloucester. On the borders of Monmouthshire are some woods of lime-tree, from the bark of which ropes are made for fishery and agricultural purposes. There are a number of nurserymen in this county, of which the principal are Sweet and Miller of Bristol, who are the most extensive garden-tradesmen in the west of England. Miss Wheeler has a nursery at Gloucester, which was founded by her father, the author of a Gardener's Dictionary.


Villa-residences

[10 - 100 acres]

Blaize Castle,- near Bristol; J. Harford, Esq. The house is an elegant Grecian design by Nash; the grounds are recluse, well-wooded and highly beautiful. Not far distant is a picturesque village of thatched cottages, also from the designs of Nash, the habitations of pensioners of the proprietor.

Buenos Ayres,- near Painwick; B. Hyett, Esq. The house is a handsome modern edifice, judiciously joined to woods, and embellished by new plantations.

Cheltenham, - Tomlyns, Esq. The gardener (Evans) has formed a brick drain along the front of his vine-border. This drain is furnished with hopper funnels at each end, through which liquid manure is supplied to the roots unaccompanied by the unpleasant smells which are dispersed around when this manure is poured on the surface.

Prinknash, - near Tewkesbury; T. B. Howel, Esq. A low Elizabethean house, on an elevated site, commanding extensive prospects. Considerable improvements were made by the present proprietor in 1806. Loudon described the pinery at Prinknash as 'constructed by me on exact principles' A Treatise on Forming, Improving and Managing Country Residences (1806).


Mansion and demesne residences

[100 - 1,000 acres]

Badmington House, - Sudbury; Duke of Beaufort. The house is an extensive building, on a French model, erected in 1682; the park is nine miles in circumference, intersected by noble avenues. The gardens were celebrated in the first duke's time; but are at present rather neglected.

Barnsley Park, - near Bibury; James Musgrave, Esq. The mansion is a sumptuous edifice, in the Italian style. The park is three miles in circumference, and contains some extensive plantations.

*Barrington Hall, - near Great Barrington; Lord Dynevor. The house is an elegant Doric structure; in the grounds is a good specimen of a ferme ornée: the park is well wooded, and three miles in circumference.

Clear Weil, - near Newlands; T. Windham, Esq. A hand- some mansion and plantations around it well disposed.

Dyrham, - near Sudbury; W. Brathwayte, Esq. A hand- some mansion, with a front of 130 feet, and a park of 500 acres.

Dunstbourne Abbots, - near North Cerney; Sir M. S. Pleydell. A villa on a singular plan, situated on an eminence distinguished for the beauty of its scenery.

Guiting Park, - near Withington; Snell, Esq. The house is elegant and compact, and the grounds beautifully varied and well wooded,

Highmeadow, - near Newnham; Lord Gage. A noble mansion, in a bold situation, containing a line bird's-eye view of the village.

Highnam Court, - near Gloucester; Sir B. W. Guise. A mansion by Inigo Jones; an extensive park, and pleasure grounds, judiciously disposed.

*King's Weston, - near Clifton; Lady de Clifford. The house, one of Vanburgh's best designs, in a situation rarely equalled for beauty and grandeur. The park abounds in fine oaks and elms; the pleasure-grounds with American plants; and there are good kitchen and flower gardens. The views, towards the Severn and the Avon, ravish the senses with their grandeur and beauty, and render this place one of the finest in the county.

Lydney Park, - near Lydney; Rt. Hon. C. B. Bathurst. An old mansion, and near it some fine wood.

*Oakley Grove, - near Cirencester; Earl Bathurst. A mansion in the old French style, amidst pines and other evergreen trees.

Rendcombe, - near Ched worth; S. Barrington, Bishop of Durham. The mansion ' s elegant and the park extensive, abounding in wood, and furnishing fir.e prospects.

Sherborne House, - near Sherborne; Lord Sherbome. A monasterial-like mansion of two quadrangles; with two parks, each between three and four miles in circumference.

Southam House, - near Cheltenham; T. B. de la Bere, Esq. a venerable and far-famed mansion of Henry VIII. It is of two stories, and more entire than almost any building of that sera in England. The situation commands some fine pros- pects in front, and is backed by old and picturesque woods.

Stoke House, - near Clifton; Dowager Duchess of Beaufort. A spacious castellated house in an extensive park, commanding fine views along the Vale of Bristol.

Stout's Hill, - near Uley; L. Baker, Esq. A handsome mo- dern edifice with octagonal projections, turreted and ornamented in the pointed style, and surrounded by fine beechwoods.

Stowell, - near Northleach; Lord Stowell. The house is on an eminence, in a pleasant park of 100 acres, embellished by well arranged plantations.

Toddington House, - near Toddington; C. H. Tracy, Esq. A spacious Elizabethean building, with gardens and pleasure- grounds in the modem style, and a park of 150 acres.

Whitcombe Park, - near Malvern; Sir W. Hicks. Situated at the base of some commanding eminences, finely clothed with beech-trees.

Williamstrip, - near Colne. An elevated site, but the house well sheltered by plantations.


James Mangles in The Floral Calendar(1839) included the following Gloucestershire gardens in his list of the principal gardens in the kingdom:

Duke of Beaufort, Badminton
Earl Ducie, Woodchester Park
Lord Northwick, Moreton in Marsh
G. Holford, Esq., Tetbury (Westonbirt)
Lord Ellenborough, Southam House
Mrs Dolphin, Eyford - Mr Ryan
Dow. Countess de Clifford, King's Weston. 'Contains fine American plants. The beauty and grandeur of the view towards the Severn and Avon renders this place one of the finest in the country.'


Northwick Park, Blockley was described by Loudon under Worcestershire: 'An ancient house, modernised, with an extensive and well planted park'.