Buscot and Cirencester – 5 September

Thank you Judy and David for organising this trip to the National Trust property and it was really sad that Judy was unwell on the day and unable to come as we had a great day.

The first stop at Cirencester gave us the opportunity to look round the town centre, do some shopping, have a coffee and visit the wonderful parish church. This is a real gem with its fine fan vaulting, remains of wall paintings, the Anne Boleyn Cup, and it is all so beautifully kept. There was an added bonus of a painting exhibition of works by local artists.

The weather was perfect and we enjoyed the drive through the Cotswolds to Buscot Park. There is something special about a property where the family actually live; it has a different feel. Lord Farington maintains and develops the house and garden to a high standard. Everything looks so cared for and new features and artefacts continue to be added.
Items from the Farington Collection are displayed in the rooms, staircase and passages. Some rooms are imposing and others almost cosy and the view of the grounds from the house is stunning.

Good information boards allow visitors to take their time on a self guided tour. The luxurious wall coverings, the chandeliers, the furniture and the ceramics are magnificent. For me, the collection of art works was almost unbelievable. Pictures by Van Dyck, Rembrandt, Rubens, Gainsborough, Botticelli to name a few, and Burne Jones’s series illustrating the Legend of Briar Rose were just some of the collection. That was the house, and the grounds are equally impressive and beautifully kept. There are views in all directions, fountains, statues, a delightful walled garden with espalier fruit trees, roses, borders with vegetables inter-planted among the flowers and plenty of seating. Harold Peto’s water
garden is another highlight. Interesting, if slightly incongruous are seventeen replica terra cotta warriors. (see picture)

Consulting the website, I realise how much that I didn’t manage to see and am determined to revisit so that I can do the park and garden justice.

Claire Osgood

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