Sunday, 25 October 2015

Return to Rousham

Dawn 
 just look at all the jewels mother nature has draped around our garden
Sunrise 
and it looks as if today will be perfect to walk William Kent's C18th landscape at Rousham
We fell in love with Rousham on our last visit, but now we love it even more, it's a gem
Palladian stable-block designed by William Kent
We had Rousham almost to ourselves,
but someone else was present having a photo shoot - that's Monty Don in the middle! 
I always imagined he was tall
BBC Gardeners' World 
This is Monty's "Twitter" comment for the 20th October
"Spent the day at Rousham. England's greatest garden under a blue sky and warm sun, lit by brilliant autumnal colour..Sublime"
So, it appears Monty agrees with us!
We enjoyed our picnic sitting in one of William Kent's pavilion seats whilst watching Monty pose in front of the Scheemaker statue, and then they left,
but the family dog chose to come with us. 
After paying the entrance fee, described here, you collect a leaflet which shows a reproduction of the original walking circuit drawn in 1738  
The grounds are beautifully tended by half a dozen gardeners who lovingly maintain it  
Dying Gladiator
Rousham represents the first phase of English landscape design, i.e before Capability Brown or Humphry Repton. It remains almost as William Kent left it, one of the few gardens of this date to have escaped alteration. Happily the features that delighted C18th visitors are mostly still in situ. 
Octagonal pool with the figure of Pan lurking in the shadows
The upper cascade where Venus presides over the glade
Lower cascade with Venus in the distance 
The Watery Walk takes you on a gentle stroll through the woods accompanied by the most magnificent serpentine rill
It gently twists and turns as it chuckles merrily on its journey
running in and out of a feature called the Cold Bath before eventually reaching its source on the brow of the hill
 near to the Temple of Echo
The hill drops down to the River Cherwell which flows beneath Heyford Bridge built nearly 800 years ago
Watched over by Apollo
Apollo seen from Venus' Glade
Following the course of the river we catch our first glimpse of Kent's Praeneste Terrace
The terrace is modelled on the Temple of Fortune at Praeneste, Italy; a famous Roman ruin, much studied by Renaissance architects Ligorio and Palladio, and generally visited as a prime site on Grand Tours
A lovely place to sit, to contemplate, to dream, and while away some time 
whilst the Cherwell meanders on through the meadows to Oxford and then the Thames
Arcading, soft colours, elegant seating - I feel as if I've been transported to Italy 'perfectto' but no! I pinch myself, I'm still here, sitting in the Cotswolds!
We couldn't resist a final peep into the walled garden

now filled with autumn flowers and colours
Rousham's historic C17th dovecote 
A  bag full of 'help yourself apples' came home with us - there will be plenty of apple pies and crumble for us during the winter months, but we shall definitely be returning to Rousham again, and again, and again♡

59 comments:

  1. Dear Rosemary, what a beautiful, beautiful garden! (How come I missed it till now?) I too imagined Monty being tall. By the way: did you ever think of putting your beautiful garden pictures and buildings into a book? I would like to have such a guide, overflowing with tips.
    PS: The first picture of dew drops on the spider web takes my breath away ( and reminds me to (re)publish a garden story of my blog 'Gardening in High Heels' - called "Breakfast at Tiffany's")

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    1. Dear Britta - the property with its wonderful landscaped garden is a hidden treasure. It is privately owned and has been in the same family since 1635 - it is not commercial but they allow people to visit every day throughout the year. You pay your entrance fee into a machine and can enjoy it for as long as you like.
      Thank you for your very kind comment - I am feeling rather overwhelmed by what you said, but appreciate it very much.

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  2. Well you certainly had the weather for it.. you've captured autumn perfectly Rosemary.

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    1. It was last Tuesday Jessica - a perfect day from dawn to dusk.

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  3. Nature can be so beautiful, specially in autumn with sunshine.

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    1. This autumn has given us so many wonderful days - I expect it has been the same with you too

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  4. Sublime indeed. I agree with Brigitta, a book would be delightful.

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    1. That is very kind of you to say Linda - thank you.
      I am sure you would love this gorgeous landscape and garden too.

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  5. What gorgeous photos of an equally beautiful place. I love this blog!!!

    I am trying to design a half timbered dollhouse. Not easy from my side of the pond . I would give anything to be able to get around like you do so I could actually see one of those houses. Mean time... I will enjoy England through your posts. Thank you for sharing all you do with us.

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    1. Thank you very much Catherine for your really kind comment. Sometimes I wonder whether I am boring people with my particular passions and should take this blog offline, but you have boosted my resolve to keep going.

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    2. I have loved every post you have made. They have all been gifts.

      I used to buy magazines, I would buy them for one picture. That was before the internet and blogs like yours.

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  6. A magnificent place to visit I must say, and the photos are really lovely. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Delighted that you enjoyed seeing Rousham and enjoyed the photos - thank you

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  7. Dear Rosemary, What perfection. Palladio endures throughout the world. It must be that strict symmetry appeals to everyone. You have photographed Rousham beautifully and expertly.

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    1. Dear Gina - I know full well that Palladio is a passion of yours too - we enjoyed the most wonderful day at Rousham last Tuesday, and both returned home feeling very happy - glad that you enjoyed the photos.

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  8. Nature sure does do some wonderful things at times.
    The gardens are beautiful. Those lawns look great as well.

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    1. Dear Margaret - nature is very hard to beat isn't she? The lawns were looking a wonderful shade of green especially considering that we are almost into November, and as you will have gathered we love the landscape and garden.

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  9. Good morning, Rosemary. As I read this post I found myself thinking, again, that the next time I visit England I will revisit your posts before I leave. I echo Britta's comment. If you were to put such a guide together I would be eager to purchase it.
    With regard to this post, as I looked at your shot of each view, i thought THIS is the loveliest.

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    1. Hello H - As I mentioned to Britta I am overwhelmed by your generous comments - thank you.
      I am so pleased that you enjoyed the photos, but in all fairness, it is such a beautiful landscape that you cannot really go wrong.

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  10. How absolutely perfect, there is nothing better than an English garden. As always your pictures were beautiful.

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    1. Thank you Mac n' Janet - you must try and visit this wonderful landscape and garden next time you cross the pond.

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  11. Hello Rosemary, How can there be so many beautiful places in one country? My favorite parts here were the Heyford bridge and the Praeneste Terrace. Those apples look good too--I'll bet a lot of them represent the premium varieties of a private orchard.
    --Jim

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    1. Hello Jim - if I had to pick out two things then I would choose the same as you. That ancient bridge is wonderful, and still carries traffic across it. However, because it is so narrow traffic lights are necessary.

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  12. Simply gorgeous! I see why you love it so.

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    1. I am pleased that you liked it too.

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  13. The spider webs are like diamonds.

    Greetings,
    Filip

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    1. Be lovely if they were, wouldn't it?

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  14. Rousham is one of the loveliest, and least unspoilt. Long may it stay that way! Your photographs of it are superb Rosemary.

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    1. The family are very proud of the heritage they have inherited so whilst it stays in their hands I am sure it will remain as it is. Thank you for your kind comment - do you know Rousham?

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  15. I used to visit it when I lived near Oxford and was studying landscape design Rosemary. As close to perfection as it is possible to get I think!

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    1. I am so pleased that you know and love it too

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  16. Manicured lawns, trimmed hedges, aged statuary and superb dahlias.

    Ms Soup

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  17. I agree with Brigitta - a guide to all the wonderful places you visit would be wonderful. Thank you for sharing them.

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    1. If you enjoyed seeing Rousham then that is what gives me pleasure to be able to share it with you but thank you for your very kind comment which is much appreciated

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  18. I am amazed that you have so much beauty within walking distance! I especially like the picture of the gate of the walled garden.

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    1. It is a ¾ of an hour car ride away from us, and then we walked the landscape, sorry if I confused you, but the whole of the Cotswold area is actually very beautiful.

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  19. What picturesque landscape! I was thinking when you’d make it again to the Rousham Garden and you chose a perfect day for exploring. Especially fun to walk along “the most magnificent serpentine rill which gently twists and turn as it chuckles merrily on its journey.” (I borrowed my favorite expression of yours.) In the walled garden, I saw the same kinds of flowers like dahlias and asters with those blooming here. Our weather seems to look alike at this season. Nice capture of that beautiful, priceless necklace made by nature.

    Yoko

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    1. Dear Yoko I am pleased that you recall my first visit to Rousham - yes, I noticed from your post on Dahlias that the same flowers were showing in both our countries at the same time.

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  20. What a magnificent 'diamond' necklace Nature has presented to you, Rosemary. And on to Rousham, and I can see why you love it so. It has so much to appeal, the Upper Cascade, the 800 year old bridge, the dove cot, but I think the Serpentine best of all. I would enjoy seeing (and hearing) it very much. I know I will never get to see the Stately Homes of England, but thanks to your lovely Blog, I feel I am exploring them now. Thank you, Rosemary.

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    1. Dear Patricia - we were going to have a rill put in our garden but we had no power in the ground at the front where we wanted it, so I was deterred. However, the rill at Rousham is like following along a fairy glade as it winds on and on through the trees, a little bit of magic.
      Delighted that you enjoyed seeing the 'landscape garden' at Rousham.

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  21. What a tour Rosemary! Rousham garden is a masterpiece and your photos as well! Its features can surely delight the visitors but to be honnest I'm in awe of your photos. I can never have so majestic captures! No shadows,no dazzling light, everything in harmony! Pure bliss!
    Thanks for sharing
    Olympia

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    1. Dear Olympia - thank you very much for your kind comment - I think that perhaps I could not go wrong - it was a perfect autumn day with lovely light, and the landscape delightful.

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  22. Indeed an amazing and grand place, sometimes I actually had to check again, because it looks so italian. And you found yourself in very good company didn't you :-)

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    1. As you have gathered I love this landscape and garden - do you see him on your TV too.

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  23. What a beautiful set of photos you've taken, Rosemary, the English Tourist Board should have you on their payroll! You picked the perfect day and the perfect time of year. Apollo, with his background of dark evergreen and foreground of bright autumnal leaves, looks wonderful. Now Rousham is on my must visit list.

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    1. I am sure that you would fall in love with it too Rosemary - pick a lovely day when you decide to go and take a picnic as it requires lots of time to visit it all.

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  24. Hello Rosemary, What a perfect day at Rousham Garden and getting to see Monty Don was an added bonus. I love his garden programme. Your photos again are spectacular and the dovecote had me on pause.
    Wishing you a great week

    Helen xx

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    1. Rousham is so lovely Helen, and being granted a beautiful day became the cherry on the cake. Monty is quite a character both on and off TV.

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  25. We have never been but it looks fabulous! Beautiful photos too! Xxx

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    1. If you are passing that way it is well worth visiting

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  26. What a wonderful day out! The garden is fantastic especially wearing it's autumn cloak. It must have been exciting to see Monty Don too! My family once saw him filming in Weymouth harbour, I was disappointed not to have been with them! I used to read his gardening articles in the Observer,a long time before he joined Gardeners World. Sarah x

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    1. The garden is of great historical interest and just so lovely to wander around. Monty is quite an amusing character

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  27. Oh my Goodness, how beautiful - all images and the whole place.
    Your photos are so wonderful. I would to want to travel there just now, but it it impossible.. :(

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    1. As you have probably gathered it is a garden that I adore - thank you for your very kind comment Orvokki

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  28. I'm surprised there's so much grass. Is that common in old English estates? It does look like a beautiful place to wander.

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    1. Rousham is an historical landscape garden presenting an idealised view of nature, but it is a fact that many of our grand properties are surrounded by man made landscapes designed by Capability Brown and Humphrey Repton. However, Rousham is very important as it was one of the first and remains almost as William Kent designed it.

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  29. I do enjoy your photos. I suppose I must seem to say similar things on every post, but it is true. Perhaps my favourite of all was the one of the garden seat with the yew berries hanging around it like the most elegant Christmas decorations.

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