Caversham Court Gardens

The title link shows photos and videos (not mine) of where I spent some very relaxing time yesterday in the sunshine, in my own back-yard of Reading.

The gardens have an interesting history of which I have copied and pasted from Friends of Caversham Court Gardens

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Caversham Court garden is of national importance and listed in the English Heritage Gardens Register.

Its history goes back to the 12th century when a Rectory was built there for St Peter’s Church. However it was found more profitable to lease the house to a layman who was responsible for providing a priest. The building was damaged during the Civil War when in 1642 Caversham was caught between the armies of Charles I (the Cavaliers) and of Cromwell (the Roundheads).

The yew hedge was planted in the 17th century. Around 1840, the Simonds family, Reading’s banking and brewing family, built a splendid Gothic mansion and renamed it Caversham Court. In the early 20th century the house had several owners and gradually declined until it was bought by the local authority in 1933. The house was demolished and the grounds opened to the public in 1934.

During WW2 the allotments were established for the ‘Dig for Victory’ campaign. Public air-raid shelters (Anderson Shelters) were built in the gardens – you can see one of these near the entrance.

In 2006 Reading Borough Council won funding from the Heritage Lottery for the restoration of these historic gardens.

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For those of you in Reading, I thoroughly recommend a visit if you fancy a relaxing afternoon.

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