Why Everyone’s Talking About The Gardens At Ashridge House


For the first time the stunning gardens at Ashridge House will play host to a sculpture exhibition showcasing the work by 15 internationally renowned and emerging sculptors

Running from 31 July-24 September 2023, The Sculpture Garden at Ashridge House is a celebration of contemporary and traditional art featuring internationally acclaimed artists such as Diane Maclean, Giles Penny and Jenny Pickford. Set within 190 acres of Grade II* registered grounds that incorporate formal gardens and fairy-tale woodland, the exhibition is an opportunity to go on a journey of discovery.

From sculptures that nestle humbly into their natural environment to bold pieces that juxtapose the summer scenery, the exhibition explores the natural world and our place within it. The rich heritage of Ashridge House, from its historic garden designers to its humanitarian uses, are reflected by the sculptures in the exhibition. The sculptors use their medium to manifest these topics and invite visitors to reflect. Penny Hardy will be exhibiting ‘Sculpture for Change’ raising funds for UNICEF creating an opportunity for a lucky visitor to win this dynamic artwork by donating.

Ashridge House Gardens

In addition, this summer the public will be able to enjoy expert tours of the gardens designed by celebrated landscape gardener Humphry Repton. Originally designed by acclaimed landscape gardener Humphry Repton in 1813 for the Earl and Countess of Bridgewater, the formal gardens remain intact today as the finest surviving example of Repton’s work and are often referred to as his ‘Garden of Gardens’.

Ashridge House’s gardens include formal gardens, flower gardens and fairy-tale woodland. The hidden jewel of Hertfordshire’s country estates, this is the first time the Ashridge House gardens have been open daily to the public and the programme of garden tours is new for 2023.

Richard Aggus Ashridge House Laburnam Walk
Photo by Richard Aggus

Tours will be led by Ashridge House’s expert gardens team and will take visitors on an informative and colourful journey through the gardens’ rich heritage and history and sumptuous views. The gardens today include Italian gardens, the rosary and fernery, herb gardens, Lady Bridgewater’s flower garden and Monk’s Garden, which features an armorial design representing the four families who have been associated with Ashridge House. Other distinctive features of the gardens include Lady Marion Alford’s skating pond and moat, now intentionally left dry, and a re-creation of Repton’s planned arbour.

Zora Tyrone, head gardener at Ashridge House, says: “The historic gardens at Ashridge are beautiful and varied, and managed with biodiversity and sustainability at the core of what we do. The gardens’ team are keen to share their knowledge, expertise and how to achieve year-round interest, with visitors during garden tours this summer.”


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