A William Morris Parterre…

‘Trellis’, by William Morris. Copyright William Morris Gallery London Borough of Waltham Forest

What are we planning?

An art exhibition due to land at Compton Verney in summer 2015, with a focus on the Arts & Crafts House. There’s an option, if funding allows to extend the exhibition outside and create a William Morris inspired parterre, mown into grass and designed by leading landscape and garden designer Dan Pearson.

Dan’s inspiration for this element of the exhibition comes from an 1864 Arts and Crafts design called ‘trellis’, shown above. This is believed to be William Morris’s first wallpaper design, and was based on roses in his garden at Red House, Bexley Heath. Incidentally, the garden at Red House was designed by Philip Webb – no relation to me, just thought I’d mention….

How and where?

The design will be mown into our West Lawn, being visible from the elevated terrace and gallery windows. Additionally, the mown sections will give opportunity to walk amongst the design, seeing seasonal wild flowers up close.

View across the West Lawn at Compton Verney

To enhance the west lawn, we’re planning to sow with native wild flower seed, including the dependable Yellow Rattle, with the aim of improving the flora through 2015 and beyond. With a good dose of elbow grease this autumn and next spring, the lawn should prove the perfect canvas – into which Dan can mark his design.

Artistic impression/visual from Dan Pearson Studio


The exhibition and designed parterre are planned for the summer 2015, but of course, much of the hard work to the West Lawn will need completing before winter sets in. We therefore have a fundraising deadline of October 3rd… So no time to waste!

How can you help?

We need your help to make this happen. Art Fund sees the value of this project, and are presently spearheading the fund-raising campaign. If you’d like to pledge support, or simply share the project through your social media streams – we’d be really grateful.

There’s a range of share buttons and rewards packages to suit donors, from wild flower seed boxes to a guided tour of the garden by Dan Pearson. Don’t forget that any sized donation is possible should you prefer not to take a reward.

I must stress: if we don’t reach our target, then this valuable activity may not take place.

And finally …

Choosing to help us in this way not only adds an important ‘garden’ element to the Arts and Crafts House exhibition, it also provides a lasting legacy for Compton Verney – enhancing a sizeable lawn area with wild flowers which will be enjoyed for years to come by our visitors and wildlife alike.

Please share this post directly, or click the link below to visit the Art Fund #arthappens page

The Dan Pearson and William Morris Meadow

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xjsdf6_SPs]

3 thoughts on “A William Morris Parterre…

  1. Reblogged this on Compton Verney Volunteering and commented:
    An exciting post from our Grounds Team about Compton Verney’s William Morris Meadow.

    We’re working with landscape designer Dan Pearson to create a large-scale landscape comission to accompany our 2015 exhibition on the Arts and Crafts House. We need the public’s support to make this happen, so we’re working with the Art Fund to raise awareness of the project, and hopefully raise the funds we need to see this exciting project come to life.

    Have a read of this post to find out a bit more. It’s an amazing and really different way to get involved at Compton Verney!

  2. Wednesday 10th September pleasant afternoon fishing the lake took 54 fish three Bream two Roach 4 to 5 oz small bream followed by a 8 – 10 oz then one about 1lb 4 oz. in between these took small Roach then one about 6 – 7 oz. However was surprised to find a dead Bream of 2lb plus floating in the shallows at the edge of the lake oit did not have any damage so must have died due to either toxic, disease or less likely natural causes as 2lb is small compared to their normal mature weight.

    Along the shallow edge of the margins to the right of the monument plinth that is now empty.

    Do you have any information apart from this post as to the current catches on the lake and the fish population in general?

    Regards Gordon Archer

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