Hidecote House & Bleinheim Palace

Bleinheim Palace and Hidecote House

Spending a few days holiday south of Cumbria, Chris has just spent some time in the Cotwolds visiting some magnificent gardens including both Hidecote House and Bleinheim Palace.

Both gardens are of very different design and both equally as intriguing. Living near Milnthorpe and Levens, Cumbria we are often treated to incredible natural landscape views including Dallam Estate and Levens Hall. Varying landscapes with either a more natural or groomed feel however both equally as managed despite their varying appearance.

It was interesting to see the variations in both Hidecote and Bleinheim. Hidecote is made up a many different garden areas designed to feel like a multitude of outdoor ‘rooms’. The garden was designed by Major Lawerence Johnston. You can’t see from one room to the next, but you stumble upon entrances and pathways to different garden areas at every few paces. Major Lawrence Johnston – now the National Trust take you on a patch of mystery and intrigue. Each outside ‘room’ of Hidecote is quite small but its power is its design and ability to lead the eye to the most incredible vistas. Hidecote is unlike any of the views we have around the Lake District and we enjoyed discovering the unique design of topiary, bathing pools, autumnal explosions of colour, lawns lined with powerful red boarders, plant houses, orchards and more.

Bleinheim was a whole different ball game. We were excited to visit the gardens designed by Capability Brown whose concept is very much about maximising the ‘Capabilities’ of the landscape. His first name is actually Lancelot, but Capability Brown was derived from his favourite advise to clients. Bleinheim Palace is set over 2,000 acres of land and designed to be seen by horse and carriage – no bikes allowed, so with the lack of horse in the back of our van we set out on foot to explore the grounds and enjoy the incredible autumn day. Unlike Hidecote the lines of sight were vast. The grounds seemed endless sometimes through illusion through clever landscaping & planting and sometimes through genuine open areas. Its hard to
Fathom that the land was sculptured in the 18th Century through hard manual labour without the use of the diggers and various machines we often rely on today.

Some of our favourite views were the incredibly groomed topiary, the mystery garden, the immaculately kept long lines of ha ha’s and the poplar and beeched lined lake created to give the illusion of an endless river of the south.

This week it is back to the office where we have design work for large properties near Kirby Lonsdale, Duddon Valley, Winderemere and Ambleside. We refuelled with fresh energy and ideas to put Chris Rabone Design’s in to full effect.

Topiary at Hidecote House
A view of Hidecote House from the gardens
Colour Explosion at Hidecote House
A pathway for the foot and the eye at Hidecote House
Borders of one lawn at Hidecote House
Bathing Pool Garden at Hidecote House
The through fair leading over the lake at Blenheim
Hidecote House & Bleinheim Palace
The poplared island with the beechwoods in the distance at Blenheim
The water fountain and topiary distinguishing the water garden at Bleinheim
A closer inspection at the water garden in Bleinheim
Hidecote House & Bleinheim Palace
Hidecote House & Bleinheim Palace
Hidecote House & Bleinheim Palace
A powerful explosion of colour found at the mystery garden of Bleinheim
Hidecote House & Bleinheim Palace