The orchards and gardens at Brockhampton
The gardens that surround the manor house reflect the tastes and needs of different generations that lived here. From the most recent family to live here in the 1950s to the medieval origins of the estate itself.
Surrounding the romantic timber framed manor house are gardens and orchards which change with the seasons and enhance the rustic beauty of the manor house itself. In front of the manor house the borders are filled with cottage garden style plants which are a wonderful display in summer; many of which were planted by Marion and Valentine Freegard, who lived here in the 1950s.
To the side, near the moat, is an unusual tamarisk tree which was purchased by Marion from Woolworths for 50 pence, a bargain even then. These slightly ragged looking trees are more commonly found in coastal locations so it unusual that this specimen thrives here in land locked Herefordshire.
Elsewhere on the island surrounding the manor house you can see cherry, pear and apple trees. There are also 50 hectares of orchard on the estate, some of which are part of an ongoing restoration project. We've planted a further 75 fruit trees as part of this restoration with more to be planted as the restoration project gets going.
Wildlife to spot
The rare and endangered Mistletoe weevil (Ixapion variegatum) makes its home in the ancient orchards on the estate and is just one of the special creatures that call Brockhampton home.
In springtime you can spot migratory birds returning to make their nests, ducks and moor hens raise their young in and around the safe haven of the moat.
They are not exactly wild but the orchards near lower Brockhampton are also filled with lambs in the springtime as the farmers put these fluffy creatures out to pasture.
Pick your own
Every year, the estate hosts pick your own events in early September where visitors can bring a bag and fill up on damsons. In April the damson blossom is out and surrounds the manor house with pretty white blossom.
Our damsons are used to make Gun Dog gin, sold in the Granary shop and are used by the catering team in delicious pies and crumbles sold in the Old Apple Store tea room.
Make sure you don't forget to buy some damson treats from the Granary shop to enjoy in your own home. October is when the apple harvest comes in and you can take your pick from ancient cider apples, eating apples and cooking apples.