Sunday, 16 July 2017

'Revitalising Vita' by Troy Scott-Smith the LRGT 2017 Annual Lecture

The 2017 Leicester and Rutland Gardens Trust Annual Lecture is being given this year by Troy Scott-Smith, Head Gardener at Sissinghurt.

Leicestershire & Rutland Gardens Trust

Annual Lecture 2017
Troy Scott-Smith
Head Gardener, Sissinghurst Castle

Thursday 14th September 2017 at 7.30pm

Revitalising Vita

Sissinghurst Garden has long been renowned as a jewel in the National Trust's  crown. Over a number of years a combination of underfunding, increased wear and tear, greater visitor numbers, extended opening, and a lack of change and  renewal have resulted in a garden that is no longer at its best.

Troy’s talk will describe how they plan to recapture the distinctive qualities of Vita and Harold's Sissinghurst, restoring the elements of romance, experimentation and exuberance that they have struggled to perpetuate in recent years. In doing this, they will show that significant and historic gardens can be managed successfully while accommodating large scale visitor numbers.

Troy is the first male Head Gardener at Sissinghurst Castle, famous for its succession of outstanding women curators. Previously, he was Head Gardener at Bodnant in Conwy, another jewel in the National Trust's crown, where he worked for 7 years.

We are lucky to have Troy talking about his work at Sissinghurst. It is sure to be entertaining, informative and passionate.

Venue:    Ken Edwards Lecture Theatre 1, Leicester University, University Road
(Location map will be sent with tickets)

  Cost:       £12.50   (includes a glass of wine or soft drink.)

Profits from this event will go to the Trust’s “Schools into Gardening” scheme.
For more information or to book, ring the Events Secretary on 0116-270-5711

Monday, 1 August 2016

Archives, Potting sheds and Databases: the Annual Lecture

The annual lecture this year is being given by Simon Gulliver, National Trust Gardens Consultant.
It looks like it will be a really interesting talk and this is the main fundraising event for the Leicestershire and Rutland Gardens Trust.  All the profits go to LRGT's Schools into Gardening Scheme, a very worthy cause.


Thursday, 10 March 2016

Moving Heaven and Earth.....

This year we celebrate the tercentenary of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown- the creator of many of England’s most cherished landscapes.

Although he has his critics (visionary- or vandal?) there’s no doubt that Brown’s name is synonymous with the smoothly contoured hills and perfectly placed watercourses that so closely copy nature. The very essence of “Englishness.”
Croome Park NT Images/ David Noton

I have always been fascinated by his engineering skills- his ability to manipulate water-  changing watercourses and creating of lakes.  Just the temerity he had to sweep away whole villages if they stood in the way of his plans to create an idealised view.  How did he manage to picture the finished landscape, with none of our modern measuring tools and digital equipment?  How did they work on such a vast scale with none of our powerful earth- moving equipment?

“Moving Heaven and Earth: Capability Brown’s Gift of Landscape,” is the title of Steffie Shields’ Spring Lecture for the LRGT. 
Steffie Shields

It is also the title of her new book, due to be published in May.  Celebrated historian, photographer and writer  Steffie will explore the surviving highlights of Brown’s career, and will include local works  at Belvoir Castle , Stapleford Park, and Burghley House.  
Burghley Lake (photo from

Steffie is organising an exhibition in London of contemporary photography   as part of the Capability Brown Tercentenary Celebrations. She is on the University of Cambridge Tutors Panel, Institute of Continuing Education, Madingley, and is Advisor to the Steering Group working towards the national celebrations this year.

Moving Heaven and Earth; Capability Brown’s Gift of Landscape; Saturday 12th March 2016 2pm: Please note change of venue:

The venue has been changed from Kenwood Bowling Club to:
Knighton Rd
Guests Welcome £2 payable on the door.  After the lecture, there will be tea and cakes.
Also:  Book Now! As part of our Capability Brown celebrations, we are hosting a trip to Croome Park on May 19th with lunch in the walled garden. Please see the website for details.

By Karen Gimson