Volunteers Save Space! project researching Nottinghamshire Parks and Gardens

Man in red jacket with umbrella looking out into a garden landscape

Gardens Trust Volunteers Support Officers are delighted to be working with Nottinghamshire Gardens Trust to encourage people with no previous experience of landscape heritage to start delving into the history of their local park or garden.

This is one of three regional activities under our Volunteers Save Space! project, which, as well as continuing to support the amazing volunteers in our 37 County Gardens Trusts, also reaches out to new volunteers, providing them with opportunities to learn about the history and conservation of historic designed landscapes and to network with groups working to protect them.

The Nottinghamshire’s Garden Story project will recruit and train new volunteers to research and record their local historic parks and gardens and then share their research via platforms such as Historic Environment Records and Local Lists, making this information accessible to all.

We are excited that for this project we will ask local people to consider researching sites that are of particular value to them. This is a great opportunity for us to see local landscape heritage through the eyes of those who use and love it. New volunteers do not need to have any previous knowledge of designed landscapes, history or research.

Open door in walled garden covered with ivy, leading to forested view

Get Involved

We would like to recruit volunteers to carry out one or more of the following tasks, either working alone, or “buddying-up” with others:

  • Researching a historic park, garden or other designed landscape – you will receive online training from the Volunteer Support Officers covering:
    • an introduction to garden history;
    • threats and conservation of historic parks and gardens;
    • step by step guidance on how to research a landscape, using a variety of sources;
    • how to use archives, including a visit to Nottinghamshire Record Office;
    • how to record what survives in the park or garden today;
    • and where to put your finished research, so that it can be accessed by others.
  • Helping to research and record landscapes via activities like:
    • photographing the sites using your camera or phone;
    • talking to other local people to collect some of their memories of the landscapes;
    • making recordings of some of the sights and sounds you can hear in the park today;
    • measuring trees;
    • sharing what’s being discovered, via social media.

Nottinghamshire’s Garden Story will run from summer 2023 to March 2024, with volunteers contributing whatever time they can, but no more than a few hours each week.

To find out more about the many ways you could get involved, you can join us online on 19th September – book your free place here.

If you would like to find out more about the project, and the various ways you could get involved, or hear about other activities under our “Volunteers Save Space!” project, which is part-funded by Historic England, please email tamsinmcmillan@thegardenstrust.org

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Painswick Roccoco Gardens, the Red House, Photo © Joab Smith