Poppies at Renishaw Hall Gardens
Taken from my Art Journal – ‘Celebrating the Year 2009’
Watercolour Sketch July 2004
That beautiful season the Summer!
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light;
and the landscape
Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
July is one of my favourite months. The flower borders are bursting with summer colour and if you have never been to Renishaw Hall Gardens and you live nearby then you are definitely missing a treat. It is the home of the Sitwell family and their history is steeped in the Arts and Crafts movement.
Here we all are (apart from me – I’m taking the picture and we are missing a daughter and partner and a neice) on our recent family picnic posing in front of Renishaw Hall as if it were ours!
The extensive grounds are a mixture of formal gardens near to the house leading into the naturalised woodland area
complete with this Laburnum walk.
There are also plants on sale that you will have seen growing in the garden.
We have been lucky enough to be there when they have had musicians positioned behind the huge Yew hedges playing flute and violin. The sound is carried around the gardens on the breeze with the nearby fountain bending and spraying spurts of water as if in time.
On a warm summers day I could sketch happily here for hours popping into the tea shop in the popular Courtyard for refreshments and a home baked scone then a wander around the grounds what could be a more perfect relaxing day? You can also book ahead to attend a performance at the outdoor theatre or fireworks or have a tour of the vineyard and sample their own wine.
The courtyard also houses a little museum and art gallery. In the tea room you can buy a cold salad lunch by weight. Just help yourself to a plate and choose from the vast selection of salads and meat, then weigh and pay!
If you go in Mid April to early May they have a splendid display of Auriculas (a type of Primula) in a purpose built Auricula House. This is like a small wooden bookcase painted black to enhance the colours of these delicate blooms with a wire netting front. They are quite fascinating when displayed this way.
I hope everyone has a glorious July and that we have some of those warm halcyon days we can all remember from our childhood when it never rained all summer long!! This will be posted ahead of time (I know it isn’t July until Monday) but I will be on my way to Scotland and without any internet, TV and a very intermittent mobile signal.