RECORDING WILTSHIRE GARDENS
Wiltshire has many attractive gardens and landscapes. Since 1986 members of the WGT have been researching and recording those of interest for their design and planting. A standard garden survey form serves as a check-list of the main features of each garden. This is accompanied by photographs, a plan showing photographic viewpoints and in some cases a bird’s eye view and a list of plants at the time of the survey. Other relevant material may also be stored with the survey including illustrative and historical material such as air photos, old maps and references in books or journals. (In some cases this other material is also held for gardens which have not been surveyed).
So far 71 gardens have been surveyed, some of them more than once. We are delighted that public access to these surveys is possible as they are now held with the Wiltshire Buildings Record archive located within the Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre at Chippenham; see Link page for contact details and times of opening for both these organisations.
Both the WBR buildings records and the WGT garden surveys are stored under the name of the Wiltshire Civil Parish in which they lie, which will be needed to check for a specific garden survey and for any information on the property which may be held in the building record. The list of gardens surveyed and the individual garden surveys are not available on-line but can be examined in person at the Wiltshire Buildings Record.
Where the owner agrees to publication an article based on the survey is published in the WGT Journal. Please click on this link below to see an example of the survey of Sharcott Manor.
Gardens are constantly changing; the aim is to give a picture of the garden at one moment in time, in the hope that it will be of interest to future owners and garden historians. It may sometimes also be of value where a planning application affects a garden or landscape. See our Planning Page for more details.
A WGT member has made an index of references to 239 garden sites of interest in Wiltshire. Many of these would be worth surveying; volunteers to carry on this work would be welcome.
Working as a recorder for the Trust can be interesting and rewarding and helps protect the County’s gardens for the future.
To find out more please go to: Contact Us.