Visit: Fonthill House Gardens and Old Fonthill Abbey
Monday, May 13, 2019

Advance Notice of Visits to Fonthill House Gardens and Old Fonthill Abbey, May 13th.


10.30 am for coffee and tour begins at 11am.This is a rare treat as entrance to see this garden is limited annually. It is the home of Lord Margadale of Islay and his family. We will be given a guided tour of the garden.The current house was built in 1972, and its predecessor was built between 1903 and 1922. However there have been at least eight major houses around the Estate since the 16th century. With the help of the new head gardener, Erwin Kraan, and two renowned garden designers, Tania Compton and Marie-Louise Agius, they are building on the legacy left  by previous generations of the Morrison family to continue with new innovations and improvements.There are formal gardens, an ornamental and organic kitchen garden, mixed planting of shrubs and herbaceous perennials, bulbs and annuals. There is also a selection of old and new sculptures including a water feature by William Pye.To the north of the house there are wonderful woodland walks with azaleas, magnolias and camellias and an oak house made from young saplings. To the south of the house there are panoramic views over the countryside, the deer park and Fonthill lake,The River Barn in Fonthill Bishop at one end of the park is nearby for lunch as is The Beckford Arms at the other end or you can bring a  picnic to enjoy in the gardens.


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2:00pm start for talk at 2:30pm. Tea at 4:00pm

By kind permission of Stephen and Bonnie Morant.


Fonthill Abbey was designed by James Wyatt for William Beckford. It is now called Old Fonthill Abbey as the later neighbouring Fonthill Abbey is currently being rebuilt. Bonnie will give us a short history of the Abbey and landscape. We will walk through the grounds which are not normally accessible to the public, through bluebells and rhododendrons, around Bitham Lake, the American Garden and also see what remains of the Abbey (which is part of the north wing).Distances between points of interest are considerable and the American Garden and the lake are only accessible to the sure footed and well-shod.


Please click here to book tickets.



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