Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Spring Gardens 2

Anglesey Abbey
When asked where she'd like to go at the weekend Mum opted for the gardens of Anglesey Abbey, the National Trust property a few miles east of Cambridge. Mum has to use a wheelchair these days so we have to think about accessibility - you don't notice steps and uneven ground unless you're using a chair - but there are no such difficulties at Anglesey Abbey. Even so we managed to find our own problem; when we got there we discovered that the wheelchair had a puncture. More in hope than expectation my brother, Les, went to ask if they might have a wheelchair that we could borrow - certainly, sir, no trouble at all.

The birch grove

We made our way along a winding path amongst daffodils and shrubbery till we reached the birch grove which glowed with the reflected light of "Little Beauty" tulips. The path led us to Lode Mill, a fully restored watermill which I really must explore further some day. Along the little millstream the swans and moorhens drifted lazily on the gentle current. Further along drifts of daffodils swept down to endless lawns.

Hyacinth beds
 As we approached the house the gardens became more formal, with many classical sculptures. The house and grounds were purchased by one Huttleston Rogers Broughton, who later became Lord Fairhaven, in 1926. He set about renovating the whole place according to his own taste. When he eventually gave Anglesey Abbey to the National Trust he stipulated that it should be preserved to represent an age that was quickly passing. We made our way back by a magical woodland walk, passing beneath some magnificent old trees.

A monument to times past

Take care.

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