Secret gardens in East England
Beyond the garden gate, follow the path to hidden gardens. Whether they’re concealed from view, unexpected gems that surprise, or unfold as you walk through them. There’s a new discovery to be made around every hedge!
You may have walked straight past the entrance and never realised it was there, but hidden within the Italianate garden at Ickworth, is fast becoming the largest stumpery in the country! Similar to the garden grottos of Italy, the Victorians loved their stumperies, as they added great drama and created a dark, gothic, fairytale atmosphere. This enchanted garden is still growing, only recently another 1,300 ferns were added to the collection.
The garden in itself at Peckover is a hidden gem, a two-acre Victorian oasis tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Wisbech beyond its high brick walls. With its hidden corners and paths, plus the occasional touch of the exotic, you might be pleasantly surprised with what you find. Head through the garage door in the main courtyard whilst you’re there and enter another unexpected garden!
The wilderness hides within its delightful borders, a charming secret garden with a summerhouse and scented plants. A place for quiet contemplation, the secret garden is tucked away, surrounded by beech hedges on all sides. But other areas of the garden are just as peaceful and tranquil, such as the walled kitchen garden and dell.
Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk
Although it isn’t tucked away now, the herbaceous border at Oxburgh was originally conceived as a secret garden, behind the existing yew hedge that at one time would have been a lot taller, with a door at each end. The purpose of the hedge is believed to have hidden one of the ladies of the house (possibly Lady Augusta Bedingfeld) so that she could walk there whilst pregnant, without being seen.
Anglesey Abbey, Cambridgeshire
As you wander down to Hoe Fen, the Wildlife Discover Area at Anglesey Abbey, you’ll find a small unexpected oasis in a wild piece of woodland. Here the sun pierces through for most of the day as we head into summer, another great space to watch the butterflies and bees flutter by. Elsewhere in the garden there’s a new discovery to made around every hedge and garden door!