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Pensthorpe named as one of the top 20 gardens in the UK

13 Sep 2019

We were thrilled to find out that The Times newspaper has recently named Pensthorpe Natural Park as home to some of Britain’s most beautiful gardens and our Millennium Garden, designed by renowned plantsman Piet Oudolf, even made the front cover of the newspaper!

Our wonderful team of gardeners and volunteers work so hard and with such passion to ensure that all our gardens and grounds are at their best for our members and visitors.

We are so proud to be named as one of the top 20 most glorious gardens to see right now by The Times newspaper and to be in such good company with other beautiful locations around the UK.

Here is who made the top 20…

  1. Dunham Massey – Altrincham, Greater Manchester
  2. Trentham Estate – Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire
  3. Levens Hall – Kendal, Cumbria
  4. The Dingle Garden – Shrewsbury, Shropshire
  5. Tintinhull – Yeovil, Somerset
  6. Kilcoan Gardens – Larne, Co Antrim
  7. Anglesey Abbey – Lode, Cambridgeshire
  8. Plas Cadnant – Menai Bridge, Anglesey
  9. Dyffryn St Nicholas – Vale of Glamorgan
  10. Great Dixter – Northiam, East Sussex
  11. Crathes Castle – Banchory, Aberdeenshire
  12. Herterton House – Morpeth, Northumberland
  13. Pensthorpe Natural Park – Norfolk
  14. Brodsworth Hall – Doncaster, South Yorkshire
  15. St Michael’s Mount – Marazion, Cornwall
  16. Snowshill Manor – Gloucestershire
  17. Greenwich Park – Southeast London
  18. Westonbury Mill Water Gardens – Pembridge, Herefordshire
  19. Coton Manor – Northamptonshire
  20. Walmer Castle and Gardens – Deal, Kent


Did you know that we have five gardens at Pensthorpe Natural Park? The Millennium Garden, Wave Garden, the Wave Line Garden, the Wildlife Habitat Garden and the Corten Infinity Garden – each designed to create a different environment and showcasing different styles of planting, providing varied habitats for the teeming wildlife that they attract.

The Times newspaper picked out The Millennium Garden as a particular highlight, so here is some information on it…

The Millennium Garden

The Millennium Garden is most notable for having been designed by world-renowned leading garden designer and plantsman, Piet Oudolf.

Launched in 1999 it was the first public garden to be designed by an emerging Oudolf, still relatively unknown in the UK at that time. Ten years later, by which point he was recognised as one of the world’s most foremost plantsman, Oudolf returned to oversee the redesign and replanting of his original garden with a decade’s more experience under his belt.

The Millennium Garden notoriously shows off his famous naturalistic perennial drifts of sub-alpine, steppe and prairie plants.

Under the watchful eye of Pensthorpe Head Gardener, Jonathan Pearce, a stunning island and ‘Monet-style’ bridge has been developed to the adjacent area creating a looped walkway for visitors connecting the Millennium Garden to the new Wetland Hide overlooking a newly created wetland area and reed-bed.

The only challenge Jonathan and his team face is that the greylag geese have recently been eating the sides of the Persicaria plant, using some of the plants as their personal salad bar! The garden still looks stunning though and visitors are enjoying a quiet moment strolling through the garden or taking a seat to relax and take in its beauty. The garden is at its prime between June and September.