The garden at Chastleton
The garden at Chastleton presents an intimate and beautiful setting for the house. With views from the windows which draw you out to the topiary, kitchen garden and wilderness, it's up to you whether you explore or just sit in the sunshine or the shade of our magnificent trees.
We take a unique approach here at Chastleton by conserving and preserving the house in the condition in which it was found. But how does that approach translate to the garden, where living things grow and change?
The garden nods to changing garden fashions but still largely has its original Jacobean layout, with divisions according to use whilst still preserving its secret garden feel of 'romantic neglect'.
You might see the garden volunteers clipping the topiary to keep it in its cloud form shapes. It's fun to try and guess what they might have been, some are easier than others.
Topiary came into fashion in Britain following its introduction to Hampton Court in the 1590s. The Chastleton topiary has probably been replanted three times with its peak coming in the early 20th century. During this time, it was regularly clipped into shapes including a cat, teapot, snail, chicken and peacock among many other designs. However, by the 1970s the topiary was being clipped only once a year and eventually lost their distinct shapes.
Anyone for Croquet?
From April to September, you can enjoy a game of croquet on the lawns where the rules of the game were codfied. In fairer weather, you might even catch our volunteer croquet team playing a demonstration game in their whites.
At one time these were bowling lawns and were overlooked from the terrace, they had become overgrown with nettles and brambles, but have now been restored and are maintained by the garden team. Croquet on the lawns at Chastleton is a unique experience enjoyed by many of the visitors, so why not give it a go.