Hampshire - Timothy Mowl & Jane WhitakerLondon: Stephen Morris, 2016, Paperback.
Condition: Near Fine.
Signed by the author, without dedication, on the title page — unverified and reflected as such in the lack of premium. Contains: Black & white photographs; Colour photographs; Maps ; Gazetteer;
From the cover: “Hampshire is a wealthy county with a rich history of major landowners, from mediaeval bishops to the Barings of the banking dynasty, all of which have created important gardens and landscapes in this lush shire of warm brick, flint, timber-framing and forest.
The remains of monastic foundations, with garden traces around their ruined enclosures, inspired in the twentieth century a series of historical revivals, most notably at Queen Eleanor’s Garden in the shadow of Winchester Hall. Queen Elizabeth came often to the county on progress and was royally entertained in 1591 by Lord Hertford at Elvetham, where magnificent outdoor pageants were held in her honour.
There are few formal seventeenth-century layouts, but Hampshire was quick to embrace the mid eighteenth-century fashion for Eclectic landscapes dotted with exotic garden buildings. Dogmersfield had a wonderful sequence, ruthlessly demolished in 1790, while more survive at Highclere, where Robert Herbert laid out an important landscape before his successor, later 1st Earl of Carnarvon, called in Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown to re-shape the parkland there. Brown’s self-styled successor Humphry Repton was also active in the county, though he failed to obtain anything of real substance other than paper commissions. However, his espousal of Ornamental Gardening saw its apotheosis in a remarkable landscape at Havant, laid out around Leigh Water by George Thomas Staunton.
The Victorians laid a heavy historicist hand on Hampshire, but then came a phase of delightful Arts and Crafts gardens, the county attracting a group of architects who came to live and work in Hampshire, wrapping their flowery enclosures around existing farmsteads, as at Compton End and Weir’s Barn, to provide that physical link between house and garden.
The twentieth century is characterised by an intensely intellectual garden at West Green, devised by Quinlan Terry and Lord McAlpine, a seminal New Perennial garden at Bury Court by Piet Oudolf, commissioned and adapted by John Coke, and a dazzling sequence of sculptured landforms by Kirn Wilkie. At Shawford, ancient meets modern, where Antony Gormley’s Watcher, standing sentinel on a high revetment, commands Wilkie’s retrieved water meadows, latticed with new channels.”