I have received the following email from the Chair of the Cumbria Gardens Trust and wondered if anyone was able to help? If you have any information please could you either email me or ideally Diana Matthews at : firstname.lastname@example.org
She asks : “Recently we have been asked to provide advice on historic gardens. The important one is that of Dove Cottage, Grasmere which was William Wordsworth’s home c.1800 for 10 years. A major project has started to reimagine Wordsworth. I am on their board of Trustees. Do you know of any specialists in the gardens of this period who could be consulted? We can do historic fruit trees through a local group. The garden is in need of a rethink, needing someone to work with a Wordsworth specialist (of whom there are several). For instance: What were the common medicinal plants used at the time? What herbs were in regular use? We have lists of some flowers in Dorothy Wordsworth’s Journals so there is some existing information. We need someone to advise. The garden at Jane Austen’s home is the right period but I dont know whether it has been planted in line with the style of the early 19th century.
We have been asked to do a brainstorming session on revitalising a 16th century manor house garden near Penrith. Do you know of any good examples elsewhere which could be used for ideas? There are probably plenty of specialists but we dont have any in our trust. We do however have some talent in our CGT (e.g. a mediaeval botanist, an arts & crafts garden designer, historic landscape consultant, one with a doctorate in tree moulds etc.). I wonder whether anyone has thought of putting together a central data base of specialists?
Any help you could give would be enormously welcome or perhaps you can point me in the direction of the right person.”