Saturday, 18 April 2009

Gothic Temple in Stowe Landscape Gardens

Today I went to visit the gardens in the National Trust Property Stowe, and I was very impressed with the gothic temple. I discovered it peering through the trees, and when I climbed the hill to the top I found it was next to an ancient tree with twisty bark, which is the closest thing I have seen to a real version of the tree in the movie Sleepy Hollow. The temple is a folly, but definitely spooky and would appear so on moonlit nights. To add to this, there are bats in the gardens and the National Trust does bat walks.

The gardens are part of the Stowe House, which is now a school. It was once the residence of Baron Cobham who commissioned a landscape gardener to design the landscape around it, and this was done with the help of the poet Alexander Pope.

WHAT beck'ning ghost, along the moonlight shade
Invites my steps, and points to yonder glade?

Alexander Pope, Elegy to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady