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The garden at Basildon Park

Thatched umbrello in the garden at Basildon Park, Berkshire
Thatched umbrello in the garden at Basildon Park | © National Trust Images/Andrew Butler

Created as a pleasure ground in the 1800s, falling into ruin in the early 1900s, and lovingly restored by the Iliffes in the 1950s, the garden at Basildon Park has had its ups and downs. Find out what you can enjoy in the gardens today, including a rose garden, Italian terrace and historic trees.

Roses to look out for in summer

With many different types of roses at Basildon Park, there's so much to see at this time of year in the gardens. We've come up with a couple of our favourites that are definitely worth looking out for.


The Rosamundi rose is a classic old rose that has beautiful light crimson semi-double blooms that are striped with white. The Rosamundi is particularly well known for its rich fragrance, and can be spotted in the curved border of the Rose Garden.

Compte de Chambord

A rose also known as Madame Boll or Madame Knorr, this rose has large, full blooms of rich warm pink, as well as a strong fragrance. Spot the Compte de Chambord in the large curved border on the right-hand side at the back of the Rose Garden.

The pleasure grounds

Around the rear of the mansion, you’ll find the pleasure grounds. Trees and evergreen shrubs frame the pleasure grounds and views over the park and countryside.

Lady Iliffe’s rose garden

One of the Iliffes’ additions to the pleasure grounds in the 1960s was the rose garden, which really comes to life in the spring and summer months with a mix of old roses, peonies and spring bulbs reflecting Lady Iliffe’s original planting design.

The Terrace at Basildon Park, Berkshire
The Terrace at Basildon Park | © National Trust Images/Andrew Butler


A formal Italianate terrace, built of large stone blocks, encloses a formal lower lawn and gives wide-ranging views over the Thames Valley hills. The terrace is located at the rear of the mansion and was built in 1850 as part of the pleasure grounds creation, to complement the central block of the mansion.

Umbrello Seat

The thatched umbrello you can see within the pleasure grounds, was created in the mid-1990s, based on a design by the garden’s original designer JB Papworth.

The umbrello would once have been the centre of a round, formal Victorian rose garden with large, dense evergreen trees forming a backdrop to the flowering borders. It would have been a quiet place for people to sit and relax in, perhaps enjoying some tea.

Today, two of the evergreen plants remain from the original garden: the maritime pine (Pinus pinaster), and the Lawson cypress (Chamaecyparis lawsoniana).

Two visitors on a garden tour with the head gardener, standing on a lawn with pink roses in the foreground and the house in the background, at Basildon Park, Berkshire

Discover more at Basildon Park

Find out when Basildon Park is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

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