Saturday, 21 February 2009

Stourhead Gardens,Wiltshire

I was out walking yesterday morning and the sky was blue, the temperature a pleasant 55f and I ended up having to take off my jacket. Much appreciated after the weather that we have had recently. As soon as I arrived home I took the opportunity to prune all the Clematis as February is the best time for this. The baking that I had planned did get done, but not until 5.0 pm.

Today the weather is dreary so my thoughts turn to a Summer post. Here we see the beautiful gardens of Stourhead on a June afternoon. Stourhead is a world famous landscaped garden and Palladian mansion.

It lies in the secluded privacy of its own valley and is one of the finest landscaped gardens in the world. Mathew MacFayden proposed to Keira Knightley in the film Pride & Prejudice here.The garden was designed by Henry Hoare II as a place to entertain and was laid out between 1741 and 1780. The magnificant lake is central to the iconic garden of classical temples and follies while the Palladian mansion houses unique collections of Chippendale furniture, magnificant paintings and an exquisite Regency library. Amongst the wider estate Two Iron Age hill forts can be discovered.

However, for me in this instance it is the garden that holds the most fascination. So, come walk around the lake with me and see what I mean.

The mansion and entrance

One of the follies

Another thing I have been getting up to this week is setting up my first i-Pod. When I think that this has 120 Gigabytes of space and my first computer only had 12 Megabytes - how technology has changed in that 16 years. I am working on installing my music,probably thousands in the end and then I will get to grips with installing all the videos I have taken of my dear Grandson. I am so pleased with the sound I get from this tiny speaker sound system - much better than our music centre. So, having taken months to make the decision to buy one, I am very pleased with it.


Linds said...

Wow! An iPod! You are way more advanced than I am, Barbara! It is on the wishlist for one day sometime, though. I am very impressed!
Great photos, as always, and I also agree that having warmer weather is such a delight. I am looking forward to spring. And yes, I have the books,and am loving them. I will look out for the other 2!

Elizabeth said...

So lovely.
I visited here some 4 years ago.
A wonderful memory!

Vee said...

Wonderful that you took the leap and purchased the iPod! You really are a woman of the 21st Century now and I am very interested in your critique of it. I don't own one yet, but I'd sure love to.

I vaguely remember seeing that temple in the Stourhead Gardens. Sometimes beautiful things remain with me for a long time.

Wish that warm weather having once shown up would remain. We had some warm days last week, but another snowstorm is following closely on the heels of the last.

Needled Mom said...

I am so glad that it has warmed up a bit for you folks. It must feel so good to be outside without your jacket.

The garden photos are just lovely. I especially like the setting of the bridge and can understand why they used the grounds for filming.

Good for you for learning how to use your iPod. Isn't it amazing how quickly technology changes?

Susan said...

Beautiful!!! Hope you are doing well. I've been so busy lately I haven't had time to e-mail, but you've been on my heart.

Tea Time With Melody said...

OH My! I love this estate and the grounds are absolutely fabulous! I wish I could have been there with you. It's places like these that are the heart of a country. Just lovely.

Linda Jennings said...

These phots are lovely! I will put this on my list of places to visit on our next trip to England. I don't have an iPod but the hubby got me an iPhone for Christmas. The technology is amazing!

ChaChaneen said...

Greetings! My sister at Tea Time with Melody tagged me and you in her recent post and I had to come over and visit you! She was right, you have a lovely blog! Nice to meet you!

Sara at Come Away With Me said...

I had to chuckle when you described 55f as "pleasant"...we'd call that chilly here! But you warmed me right up with those lovely June photos of lakes and blossoms and sunshine. A beautiful place.

Willow said...

Can you imagine living in that mansion and being able to walk those paths through the gardens every day? I'd never have bothered to go to London for 'the season'!

debbie bailey said...

I've always wanted to see these gardens. They are in so many movies. Help me out, Barbara. How do you pronounce Stourhead? Does it rhyme with hour? I hate mispronouncing words and would like to get this one right. Thanks!

Aubrey said...

Your steps ahead of me--working an iPod. I'm so clueless about all that stuff.

That garden is so lovely--I really liked that scene in P & P.

I thought London was a cold place--you've been having warmer temperatures than we have! I guess it's colder in the Rocky Mountains than at sea level.

Linda said...

I have such great memories of my visit to Stourhead. How well done it is.

blueberry hill said...

Hi Barbara,
Just catching up with your blog after many months (I lost all my bookmarks when my PC crashed!) Great to see some beautiful photos - makes me feel like taking a trip to some of these places.

Anonymous said...

I just had to ask Hubby to explain what an i-pod was (children are back at school and my usual form of C21st info). LOL

Oh my what a private park! I think in Oxfordshire the village of Nuneham Courtney was made, when the local lord of the manor wanted something similar to what you've shown. he simply moved the entire village out of the way and built a lake and views. The villagers had no say in the matter- there was still a very medieval attitude back then.

a woman who is said...

The gardens are stunning. Stourhead is on my list. I didn't quite get there on my first trip to England. So many amazing gardens to choose from in your country.

I love my Ipod. Besides listening to music, I have enjoyed getting weekly podcasts of some of my favorite preachers. Bill Johnson's church in Reading does one weekly and they are free. Then I can take my walks while listening to a sermon. Enjoy!

Elizabethd said...

Ipod??? How clever of you, I wouldnt know where to start!
It is years since I was at Stourhead, but I recall how lovely the lakeside was.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

What a perfectly gorgeous day, in a perfectly gorgeous spot!

Congratulations on your iPod. You will absolutely love it!

Mike said...

Those photos are beautiful. I hope we get a good summer this year after a good winter!

Barbara said...

Looking at your beautiful pictures, bring back a lot of memories. About 5 years ago we also visited this famous place. Unfortunately mid of July there weren't any more rhodos blooming. But we enjoyed our long walk there too.