The arboriculture of West Country parks and gardens, 1660-1730

  • Tamsin Victoria Alice Chambers

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)


This investigation seeks to determine the appearance of West Country designed landscapes in the post-Restoration period, with particular emphasis on the use oftrees at each site. It also examines how earlier garden designs were adapted to reflect the new fashions of the late 16th and early 17th centuries and studies the physical evidence remaining in the field today. Contemporary illustrations (including 63 engravings by Kip and Knyff), garden treatises and other maps and documents are analysed for information on tree use. These sources, as well as fieldwork at six sites in Bristol and Gloucestershire, reveal that most West Country gardens were not created in the Franco-Dutch Grand Manner but were more restrained and simple. Their development was not only influenced by' fashion but by many other factors, including the physical nature ofthe site, the status of the owner and the meaning he wished to .give to his landscape. The main motive for tree-planting was to make a profit from wood and timber but trees were also used extensively in ornamental features (avenues, groves, rows and woods) which formed the skeleton on which the rest ofthe designed landscape was based. Much more survives ofpost-Restoration planting - in the form of living and dead trees, planting pits and other earthworks - than previously thought. /
Date of Award2008
Original languageEnglish

Cite this