All lectures are from 7 to 8pm on a Monday evening.
Doors open 6.30pm for a glass of wine.
The Gallery, 77 Cowcross Street London EC1M 6EL.
(Entrance: through courtyard to far end, down stairs)
Nearest station: Farringdon
Buses: 63 along Farringdon Road, 55 + 243 along Clerkenwell Road.
Gunnersbury Park and its Gardens: A History
From the 1660s the Gunnersbury estate comprised a Palladian mansion and terraced garden surrounded by farmland; a century later the garden was remodelled and the parkland enlarged with Kent’s advice. The house was replaced in 1802 by two new mansions, both later acquired by the Rothschilds. Gunnersbury became a public park in1926, and is now at the mid-point of a major restoration. Elements of all these phases remain.
Gardens of the Great Strand Palaces
Powerful bishops had their ‘inns’ and expansive gardens along the strategically placed Strand in the Middle Ages, and following the Dissolution most of these prestigious properties passed into the hands of high-ranking courtiers. The ‘Strand palaces’ were visible from the river and became a major enhancement to London itself. These fine gardens provided rus in urbe and were the site of great innovations in garden-making.
Plant Drawings at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Accurate depictions of typical specimens are indispensable for plant recognition, and artists have been employed at Kew ever since Sir Joseph Banks appointed the great Francis Bauer for this purpose in 1790. Other works have been acquired by gift or purchase, and the collection now comprises over 200,000 items. Lynn Parker is Illustrations and Artefacts Curator at Kew.
The Shirley Wilderness: An Early Ecological Garden
The Rev. William Wilks (1843-1922), developer of the Shirley Poppy, created a ‘wild’ garden on 2.8 ha. inspired by the writings of William Robinson. His aim was to create a paintable landscape, embellishing heathland and woodland with suitable shrubs and trees of both native and exotic origin. The reintroduction of this landscape poses questions of public access, therapeutic impacts and the essence of wild.