Barnards Farm, Essex: a labour of love

The creation of this garden over the last 35 years and opening in aid of the National Garden Scheme has been a labour of love for owners Bernard and Sylvia Holmes. A visit – even virtual – is an exuberant, absorbing experience not to be missed. Extending over 17 hectares, the garden’s heroic size is matched by the memorable main vista between undulating yew hedges, and the fantastic collection of sculptures including works by Anthony Gormley and Elizabeth Frink and a Sitooterie by Thomas Heatherwick.

The garden also holds the Plant Heritage national collection of Malus and children love the numerous discoveries to be made and the miniature railway. To one side is Bernard Holmes’s grass airstrip for his light aircraft and as you can see, an aerial view of the garden’s landscape brings home its scale and the arrangement of its views and ornamental features.

Be sure to take a look at their garden page and see when they next open.

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