The Swiss GardenA visit to The Swiss Garden takes you back to the early 19th century, when an interest in ornamental gardening and picturesque architecture first came together.
The Swiss Garden, Old Warden Park, Bedfordshire, created in the 1820s by Lord Ongley, is a late Regency garden and an outstanding example of the Swiss picturesque.
The Swiss Cottage provides the main element for this unusual and atmospheric garden. It provides the principal aspect for a number of contrived vistas which lead the eye towards this attractive thatched structure. The unusually smooth hill on which it stands is suggestive of the work of the architect John Buonarotti Papworth (1775-1847) who lived nearby. He recommended the use of unpeeled bark for the rustic buildings in the Swiss manner and may have designed this cottage with its pillar and thatch and interior decoration of bark and fir-cones. The Shuttleworth family introduced a number of Victorian 'improvements' after buying Old Warden Park in the 1870s, most notably the extensive use of Pulhamite and the creation of a raised terrace on the garden's Western flank.
To discover more about Pulhamite visit www.pulham.org.uk.
Interesting things to see in the garden are, a grotto and fernery, a thatched tree shelter, an Indian Pavilion, two ponds and many fine specimens of shrubs and conifers, plus some remarkable trees.
Access for Disabled People Old Warden Park
Wheelchairs for loan are available free of charge from the visitor centre. Most paths are easily accessible and there are benches at frequent intervals. Toilets are suitable for people in wheelchairs On occasional event days (flying days and concerts) arrangements may change, please follow any temporary signs.
NO DOGS ALLOWED (EXCEPT GUIDE DOGS)