Kent countryside via rail

Jan 2nd, 2003, 04:59 AM
  #21  
jw
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Wow, JC, are you sure you wouldn't consider writing a book? I've been copying and filing like mad. Maybe you and Ben could collaborate. J.
 
Jan 2nd, 2003, 06:54 PM
  #22  
JC
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To Jw:Very glad you find them of some interest. But,Mr Haines is most knowledgeable about travel and generous to share; I am merely someone with a simple taste,trying to enjoy a little travel my own way,and still having great difficulty to express myself coherently in English,as it is not even my second or third language.
 
Jan 3rd, 2003, 04:46 AM
  #23  
jw
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Topping this to give more folks a chance to enjoy. Tom, I hope you are profiting from these delightful posts, and thank you again for starting an exchange for those who prefer to leave the driving to others.

Can anyone recommend a good picture book of English gardens? JC, I'm amazed by your last message. You might, in return, be interested to learn that my little house has not even a wildflower around it, nor a vine, nor a herb, nor a flower pot to speak of. I'm a devoted appreciator but a hopeless practitioner.
J.
 
Jan 3rd, 2003, 10:01 AM
  #24  
erica
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I too have been copying and pasting this post. I hope to be able to see some beautiful gardens this summer. I have been trying to find a Latin program in England, but have been unsuccessful. But, I found a local college offering an intensive medieval Latin course starting in a couple weeks. So...I'm taking the local Latin class and putting off my final undergrad classes until this summer - in London!

I would much prefer to be in England off-season, but since summer is my only option I will take this opportunity to see the famed English gardens. I will be in London from May thru July. I am sure I will be pestering everyone on this board for the next few months (fair warning, Mr. Haines!).

By the way, JC, there is a fantastic botanical garden in my hometown. If you're ever in St. Louis, Missouri, be sure to see it. It's beautiful.

Thanks, everyone!
Erica
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 07:03 AM
  #25  
oliver
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I can certainly recommend Kent and East Sussex for great gardens, historic houses, castles and countryside. We stayed at a great B and B in Cranbrook kent called Church Gates (http://www.churchgates.com) and owned by a landscape architect very knowledgible on local gardens. Its just three miles from Sissinghurst - a most stunningly beautiful garden, and it can be reached on a lovely walk through open countryside with sheep and lambs on the way, if you are feeling energetic. Otherwise its only a short taxi ride away or a bus trip to Sissinghurst village and a short walk. Great Dixter is another fabulous and famous garden - about ten miles away. Is possible to reach it on the bus from Cranbrook, but you would spend a long time to get there, so car hire or taxi would be best. I think the idea of a travel guide for visits on public transport would be an excellent idea. Some good garden and countryside views for kent are at http://www.invectis.co.uk/sissing/ . Enjoy!
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 09:24 AM
  #26  
janis
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You've gotten TONS of good information in this thread. For those of you who can't or really don't want to drive, but still want to visit lots of gardens, consider staying in a village B&B, instead of staying in London and doing day trips via rail/bus. If it is Kent and east Sussex for instance, stay someplace like Cranbrook ot Tenterden and take local buses and/or hire local drivers for daytrips. Every village/town has several licensed hire cars and they are very inexpensive.

So if the bus goes where you want - great, but if not, get a driver.

The same would work in other areas of the UK - pick a central village and travel out from there.

London has lots of great gardens but it is also VERY expensive. So for a good 10 to 14 day gardening trip stay 5 to 7 days in London for sightseeing, theatre, gardens, and then get out to the country. You will save a LOT of money by staying in a country B&B.

(And outside of the cities, driving is not that hard - really
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 12:02 PM
  #27  
JC
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To Jw: Some garden books on hand:
The Shell guide to the gardens of
England and Wales (Sarah Hollis)
Great English Gardens
(Andrew Lawson & Jane Taylor)
The English Vicarage Garden
(Miss Read)
The Englishwoman's Garden
The English Garden-A social
History(Charles Quest-Ritson)

To Erica:Many thanks about the tip of Botanical Garden. I have visited St.Louis few times for trade shows,now I know where to go for a walk.

May to July,three months in London, imagining outdoor concerts and theatres,free lectures and music,endless walks around the town and delicious summer berries with cream... How I am envious of you!

In the summer,Middle Temple Garden off Fleet Street is very lovely; a morning stroll among thousands roses in Regent's Park always brights my whole day up. Last year,Mr Haines posted that all square gardens in London were open to public one day in June,the same this year,perhaps?
-Continue-
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 12:40 PM
  #28  
JC
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It will be nice to visit Sissinghurst in late June/July,its famous White Garden(every plants with white flowers)will be at the best. At the same time, the Privy Garden in Hampton Court will be a profusion of beautiful colours;don't miss the Great Vine(more than 2 hundred years old).

If you love roses,July is the best time for Gardens of The Rose (the best rose collection in the world) in St.Albans,20 minutes train from King's Cross Thamslink. St.Albans is a lovely old town,boasts the oldest pu?) in U.K.

But,for British gardens at her most splendid and beautiful,Go to Bodnant Garden in Wales,a short train ride from Chester to Llandudno Junction,then 15 minutes bus to garden entrance.It takes more than one visit to appreciate the whole beauy, but,in late May/early June,you could see the famous "Laburmum Arch",60 meters long of arch with flowers like golden raindrops. Besides, Chester is a well-kept medieval walled town,take a walk around the walls,there is even a second-hand bookstore on top of it. another direction is Cornwy with impressive Cornwy Castle,both worth the long trip from London.
 
Jan 5th, 2003, 05:19 AM
  #29  
jw
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topping for additional converts.

Would anyone like to recommend a village or country town b & b w/in easy walking distance to the train or bus station? (If you have already done this, just reply 'read again', as I tell my impatient students.) Years ago I had a wonderful stay (traveling with driving friends) in a b&b called Fig Tree Farm outside Sevenoaks, but it would never do for public transport. Out of curiosity, does anyone know if it is still in operation?

Thanks for the book list, JC!

J.
 
Jan 5th, 2003, 10:14 AM
  #30  
David in UK
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Gardening at Sissinghurst by Tony Lord is a beutifully illustrated book on England's most famous garden and will whet every garden lovers appetite before they visit. Also check out the ngs.org.uk website for a huge range of gardens open for charity- ranging from the classic gardens like Sissinghurst and Great Dixter which open on a specific date for the NGS aswell as their regular openings, to tiny little private gardens which only ever open one or two days in the year. Its a great way to see the English persuing their favourite pastime. The gardenvist.com website is also a good guide for gardens in England - and the rest of the world (although there are some errors occasionally on opening times and access by public transport -so double check with the gardens direct if possible. Hope you all enjoy your garden holidys in the UK.
 
Jan 12th, 2003, 03:33 PM
  #31  
me
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topping
 
Jan 12th, 2003, 08:41 PM
  #32  
JC
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To JW: for town/village with easy train/bus connctions for visiting gardens, may I suggest some places I have stayed(usually 4-5 days),all with good public transports? Most of the time(except holiday cottages),I book B&B through local Tourist Informtion Cnetre upon arrival.

Tunbridge Wells,Hastings,Bath,Exeter,Plymouth,Falmouth,Penza nce,Tenby,St.Davids,Caernarfon,Wrexham,Oxford,Camb ridge,Norwich,Harrogate,Windemere,Durham,Glasgow,I nverness.
 
Jan 13th, 2003, 01:31 AM
  #33  
xxx
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Thanks, JC. Look for the long bar next to your thumbs. Pity, your info is spot on!
 
Jan 13th, 2003, 07:57 PM
  #34  
JC
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Sorry,how did I do it?
 
Jan 14th, 2003, 02:42 PM
  #35  
jw
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Thanks again, JC.
J.
 
Jan 19th, 2003, 05:10 AM
  #36  
ttt
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topping for garden lovers
 
Feb 8th, 2003, 07:51 AM
  #37  
 
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To Jw,an intersting site for B&B for garden lovers: BBFL.co.uk. JC
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Feb 9th, 2003, 04:46 AM
  #38  
jmw
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Thanks, Judy. What a pleasure to see this thread brought back to the top. J.
 
Feb 11th, 2003, 07:39 AM
  #39  
 
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Shall be BBGL.co.uk,sorry.
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Mar 5th, 2003, 05:40 AM
  #40  
jmw
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Bringing this one back to the top for someone who would like to leave the driving to others.
 

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