NANTWICH WALLED GARDEN - 6

Visit to the garden got the picture I wanted 

  September 2017

I HAD been taking pictures of the walled garden since I became Web Editor of the Nantwich Walled Garden Society (NWGS) website in 2004.

    I had been producing websites since retiring in 2002, and then I saw a publicity card about the campaign to preserve the garden for the town and it's visitors by a small group of people.

   I volunteered to produce a website for them and my offer was accepted.

   The group were led by retired school teacher, Pat Fulford, who - it is on record - woke up one day and declared "I'm going to save the walled garden".

   The site was owned by a property development company who were planning to build on it, which would have meant the garden being lost to the town for ever.

   Sadly, Pat died in 2009 without having fulfilled her dream.

 

THE NWGS decided they could run a website without my help and so we parted company. But, as you can see here, I am running pages about the walled garden. Many, but not all, of the pictures were taken for the NWGS but copyright laws give me the right to use them.

 

ON one of my photographic expeditions to the garden while still Web Editor I set out to get some pictures of the so-called "jungle" (the overgrown garden) for the website.  

    I went inside the walls of garden site - not too far in to have been deemed to be trespassing - with some trepidation in case there was a hidden deep hole masked by the foliage. In addition, it was said that there was an old well in there somewhere.

   I came back out of the garden and saw a man watching me. Thinking he might have some connection with the developer I quickly introduced myself as the NWGS web editor, and explained what I was doing.

   It turned out that the man and his wife had recently moved to Nantwich and lived in one of the apartments in Byron Walk. They were pleased to be able to buy the apartment when it became available because it faced the wall and not further housing in the Kingsley Village estate.

   Not that the wall is all that good to look out on as it has been there for more than 400 years and, while doing very well  for an old structure, is in need of restoration. 

 

 

The west end of the walled garden as seen from a property in Byron Walk.

 

 

Below: a notice board in Kingsley Village.

 

   I was pleased to learn that the couple were  impressed with the NWGS website and all the information they gleaned from it about the garden and the campaign.

 

THANKS to the gentleman, I managed to do something I had been hoping to do for some time. That is, meet a local person who would allow me to take pictures of the garden from the top floor of one of the homes. That is one of them at the top of this page. (See this page for another).

   I had already taken pictures from ground level aiming my camera through any available gap in the wall. And I once used a familiar technique to photographers of putting the camera on a monopod (a "one-legged tripod")

 

raising it above the top of the wall and aiming it by guesswork before the countdown equipment on the camera "fired" the shutter. That worked very well.

 

I ALSO took the opportunity to ask the man if visitors to the garden would bother him when (not if, you note!) NWGS achieved their aim of opening the garden. He said they wouldn’t, although he did wonder where they would park their cars.

   There is a notice at the entrance to Kingsley Village (left) which should deter visitors to the garden from parking on the housing estate roads

   The absence of a car park has been cited as a reason for the garden plan not going ahead. But in its garden plan booklet, the NWGS notes that there are several car parks in town which visitors could use before walking along Welsh Row, for instance, admiring the old buildings on the way.

   I have no doubt that some visitors to the garden would try to park in Fairfax Drive, etc, causing problems for residents. But I'm sure that the NWGS would try to arrange for visitors to park on Nantwich Town F.C.’s car park when it's not needed for the fans.

   There is a car park in St Anne’s Lane very near to the walled garden, although it is admittedly pot-holed (see here) and there is a plan to create a hotel and apartments on the former gasworks site.

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