‘For King and Country’ – First World War exhibition at Newark Park

To mark the First World War centenary Newark Park will be launching a special exhibition from Wednesday 30 July until Sunday 21 September.

Mary King with fellow nurses ©National Trust

Mary King with fellow nurses ©National Trust

‘For King and Country’, will tell the story of two Newark characters who between them made a significant contribution and sacrifice to the war effort. Continue reading…

‘Get knotted!’ at Trerice’s new Tudor garden

Trerice Knot garden

Trerice Knot garden

Eight hundred young yew trees have been planted to map out the intricate design of a new Ladies’ Garden at Trerice near Newquay in Cornwall which opens today, Thursday 24 July.

This gem of a knot garden is set to bring to life this romantic Elizabethan manor house [1] which has been a labour of love for the gardening team and 13 volunteers.

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TAKE IT OUTSIDE! National Trust campaigns to connect 200,000 kids with the natural world

Climbing a tree

The National Trust is aiming to get 200,000 kids playing outside this summer as part of its commitment to connect the ‘cotton wool generation’ with nature.

By September we hope to have helped one in twenty of Britain’s 7-12 year olds (5 per cent[1]) break their reliance on gadgets and computers for entertainment, and experience the simple pleasures of outdoor adventure.

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Bantham Beach & Avon Estuary

Picture by Steven Haywood

Picture by Steven Haywood

Mark Harold, South West Regional Director for the National Trust said: “We have today been informed by the agents acting on behalf of Evan’s Estates that we have been unsuccessful in our bid to purchase Bantham Beach and Avon Estuary in South Devon.

We are extremely disappointed at this decision.  We, along with many thousands of people who have contacted us over the past few weeks encouraging our involvement in its future, care very passionately about Bantham.  We believe this is a very special place, held dear in the hearts of many, not only locally, but also those who have fond memories of childhoods and family times spent there.

We will of course continue to care and protect for ever and for everyone the 40 miles and 3,000 hectares of the South Devon coast we already care for. We would also want, if possible, to work with any future owners of Bantham Beach & Estuary and ensure that this beautiful location is continued to be enjoyed by the many thousands of people who have told us how much it means to them.

We would like to thank everyone for their support of our fundraising appeal. As a charity the Trust relies on the generous support of its supporters who help us care for some of the most beautiful and vulnerable stretches of coastal land in the country.”

 

A walk on the wild side

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFyne Court in the heart of the Quantock Hills is undergoing a quiet transformation and perhaps not in the obvious way.

Often referred to as a hidden gem, the large house and landscaped gardens have long been lost to fire and the wilds. Rather than opting to restore the garden to its former glory, the National Trust is taking a different approach, creating a wildlife corridor.

As Nigel Garnsworthy, head ranger explains: ‘There is always a bit of a management dilemma when looking after a property like this. The key thing is considering all the important features at Fyne Court whether they are ecological, cultural, historic or recreational and balancing all of these so that one aspect doesn’t impact too greatly on the others.’

Liz Hall, full time volunteer ranger is heading up the first phase of the project creating a wildlife garden at the entrance of the cobbled courtyard.

‘I wanted to create a visual welcome for our visitors, that was also friendly to wildlife particularly bees and butterfly.’

The planning of the wildlife garden was a collaborative one. In consultation with Butterfly Conservation, Somerset Wildlife Trusts, reptile and amphibian group (RAGS) and the head gardener at Barrington Court, Liz and a team of volunteers had a wealth of information on best practise and planting.

‘I’ve picked out flowers with all of this in mind. For example, the lavender hedge and buddleia that have just gone in will attract bees and butterflies whilst the honeysuckle on the back wall will be great for night fliers such as moths and bats. Plants like the shrub roses will flower for colour in the summer and the hips will feed the birds in the autumn. A willow roe deer sculpture acts as a finishing touch and means our visitors are bound to see at least one animal in the garden.’

The garden and additional feeders and bird and bat boxes that have gone up mark the start of a bigger picture, creating a wildlife corridor that runs to the dipping pond, on to the walled garden and beyond. We want the place to look cared for but in the spirit of wildness. We will be carrying out wildlife surveys later in the year to see who has made Fyne Court their new home.’

The plants were bought thanks to money from the Quantocks AONB sustainable development fund and the deer sculpture was funded from the generous donations people make in the second hand book stall located in the Fyne Court information area.

Happy hours spent on the water at Bantham

Bantham picture by Christine Anderson

Bantham picture by Christine Anderson

Christine Anderson is a watersport partner with the National Trust in South Devon, she shared with us her love of Bantham

“I was 14, freshly uprooted from Hertfordshire, and had struggled through the strangeness of my first day at a new school. To compensate, my mum took me for my first beach trip; I discovered Bantham. This beach made it all worthwhile! My new life was suddenly was looking very good. Surf for me to play in, a huge expanse of sand for the dog to charge on, and the beautiful backdrop of Burgh Island for the grown-ups to admire. My initial joy at being there has only increased during the subsequent 35 years as my love of watersports has developed and diversified. Bantham has been the perfect playground to challenge my skills.

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The peace and uncomplicated beauty of Bantham

I was born in Devon grew up near Killerton. Weekend trips to the beach were a regular part of my childhood whatever the weather. In fact, my family tended to avoid high summer when our favourite haunts were full of holiday-makers, preferring to visit instead in the winter when dogs could run on the beach. We’d take tennis balls and and an old racquet for them and my dad would send the balls an impossible distance along the sand for them to chase. They’d fall asleep in the car on the way home, wet coats pressing against our legs, misting up the windows.

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Trelissick House opens up one of Cornwall’s finest vistas

Alice Watts & Tammy Stafford pulling back the curtains to reveal beautiful view of the estuary below Trelissick House

Alice Watts & Tammy Stafford pulling back the curtains to reveal beautiful view of the estuary below Trelissick House

For the first time this summer Trelissick House is opening its doors to visitors five days a week. Sitting on its own peninsula and looking straight down the Fal estuary, from 2 July this offers one of the grandest views in Cornwall.

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