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Thenford: The Creation of an English Garden

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I very much hope that one of the lessons we as a nation will learn from the last couple of years is the therapeutic effects of gardens and greenery. That day marked the start of a 40-year odyssey which has seen Lord Heseltine, whose mane of blond hair and swashbuckling style earnt him the nickname ‘Tarzan’ in the 1970s, transform the 70 acres of land surrounding the Northamptonshire mansion from an overgrown jungle of weeds and silted-up ponds – ‘the grounds had been neglected for most of the 20th century’ says the former deputy prime minister – into a series of distinctive landscaped gardens, each with its own particular character. Beautifully illustrated over 320 pages with both professional photographs and private family images, this personal story of the creation of an extraordinary garden will delight horticultural experts and novices alike. Read more the creation of an English garden that you are ever likely to have the privilege of reading .

Having begun his career as a property developer, he became one of the founders of the publishing house Haymarket.At the thought, I surmise, of large family groups with screaming toddlers and a pram carving its way across the grass, a cloud crosses Michael’s face. Written in both their voices, each taking different chapters, with warmth, amusing anecdotes and respect for the people who have helped advise and craft it' Garden Design Journal. The woman in question was a poor choice for the job, Lady Heseltine thinks: “I forget her name, but she is married to … Alan .

At that moment, in the driveway visible through the window behind her, I see a rangy 83-year-old in corduroy trousers and purple socks, his luxuriant hair buffeted by the wind, whistling past in a golf buggy.Although my favourite garden is the cascading rill, a stunning water feature comprising nine interconnected pools.

It makes you nostalgic for a certain stripe of patrician Conservative, now in short supply, who viewed the sensible stewardship of the nation as their natural responsibility, and didn’t much care if they seemed remote in exercising it. An image arrives of a prehistoric political titan, mace in hand, doggedly propelling his stone-age vehicle onwards with his feet.Press photos have been available to the public for just a few years, and similar to baseball cards, they have attracted investors and collectors. Now Anne, too, has a distinctly sceptical look; despite the tea and biscuits recently provided by a servant summoned by telephone, the atmosphere has chilled.

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