Autumn 2013

As the nights draw in and the leaves accumulate in our drains (why do they always seem to congregate there?) it is time to look back over this year and to look forward to the next.

Readers of the Spring Newsletter will surely recall that the Trust was then described as ‘in a dilemma and possibly facing an uncertain future’, due to the resignation of several key members of the Council of Management.  I am delighted to report that we now have a new Secretary, a new Chair of Recorders and a new Publicity Officer.  The search for a Journal Editor and an Education Officer continues and I hope, with your help and suggestions, to have these posts filled by the time of our next Newsletter.

The programme of visits continued through the summer wasn’t it wonderful to have such blazing sun for so much of the time and reports of these are included.

On 19th October our Annual Lunch at Prideaux Place was an opportunity to celebrate the 25thanniversary of the Trust at the site of our first major grant-aided project.  A lovely warm October day and how inspiring to see the continuing improvements the Prideaux-Brunes are making to their garden.

A couple of years ago the Association of Gardens Trust started discussions with the Garden History Society about working in partnership.  As time has moved on this joint venture has become ever closer and the two organisations are now looking at the benefits of merging to provide a larger and more powerful voice that will strengthen the lobbying power of both groups.  We hope to hear more over the next year.

The AGT is also keen to promote the tercentenary of Capability Brown and to have every County Gardens Trust contribute to this celebration.  To the best of my knowledge Cornwall and Brown never crossed paths and we are trying to discover, in the absence of any of his work here, whether there are any family links to Brown landscapes elsewhere.  Answers on a postcard please.

Looking forward, we will be having a stand at the Cornwall Garden Society Spring Show so put a note in your diary for April 5-6 2014 and come along to bask in what will undoubtedly be glorious weather and a fantastic weekend.  Of course, we are also planning another superb programme of visits to some of our Glorious Gardens.

A huge debt of gratitude is owed to Peter Fairbank, who has been Secretary since 2001.  Throughout his tenure he provided a solid and reliable base for the Council, creating and maintaining a truly superb set of records and keeping the focus on the aims and objectives of the Trust.  In the few months I have known him I have built up a great respect for him and the lightness of touch that he brought to his work.  He will be greatly missed.

Richard Stone