Other People’s Gardens: A brief visit to Wightwick

Not only have we done very little in our own garden this year, but we haven’t done much visiting either. Both are for the same reasons, really – J has been working away a lot and has not felt like doing much at weekends, and on the weekends when we have planned to do something the weather has often been against us. So when we both had chance to take a few days off work, it seemed like a good opportunity to remedy some of that.

We had a night away in Chester this week, and on our way there made Wightwick Manor our pitstop for lunch and stretching our legs as it was a good halfway point on the journey. I had been to Wightwick many years ago (definitely over 30 years back, probably about 1982) as it wasn’t too far from home, but it was always a tricky place to find. It’s on the edge of Wolverhampton, and if you are unfamiliar with the roads it can be a bit of a trial to get to.

The house itself is 19th century, though there are surviving elements of the earlier manor house. The main house was built by a wealthy industrialist and still has all its William Morris decor, Arts & Crafts furniture and Pre-Raphaelite Art.

We only had a brief turn around part of the garden, and knowing how ours had reached the fading-and-going-over stage of summer it was comforting to see that we weren’t the only ones. Still, it was being tended and kept neat and tidy – there was just a feeling that the flowering plants were giving their last, and the next phase had yet to arrive.SONY DSC SONY DSC


There were some lovely dahlias and sunflowers in the kitchen garden.


And some very happy bees enjoying them.


I was extremely taken with the little “stepover” apples, and am now trying to work out where I could have some.


Finally, a little bit of artiness. One corner of the peach house, with a proper old water butt and a lovely bed of nasturtiums and marigolds. The composition couldn’t have been better if it had been planned.




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