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The Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust News - old stories

Searching for the lost garden of Powis Castle

Powis Castle and its lost garden; photo 03-C-0778 © CPAT One of the intriguing aspects of Powis Castle is the ‘Lost Garden’ that once lay below the Great Lawn. A perspective drawing of the castle in the 1750s shows that at that time the lawn was occupied by an ornate Dutch water garden graced with parterres, ponds and statuary. The water garden is thought to have been developed from about 1705 when at least one pool, described as a ‘noble Bason’ is known to have been in existence. The water garden is again shown on a plan of Powis Castle and its grounds in 1771 by the architect Thomas Farnolls Pritchard (the designer of the famous Coalbrookdale Bridge), but appears to have been replaced by the present lawn early in the following century.

In late 2008 CPAT was commissioned by the National Trust to see whether any trace of the earlier garden could be identified from geophysical survey. The results of the magnetic gradiometer survey show that traces of the garden do indeed survive below the turf. To find out more about our search for this buried treasure, follow this link to our project pages.

Chris Martin, March 2009

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