The purpose of the parks and gardens training on Saturday 19th November was to raise awareness of the variety of garden features that may be encountered during your surveys. The difficulty with these surveys are the vastly different parks and gardens encountered, not all of which are so clearly defined as those seen at Little Ponton or Stoke Rochford. For instance, some examples may have never been more than a small orchard at the back of a large house.
The survey form that we use for the parks and gardens is very similar to that used for the archaeology surveys therefore it may not always be as clearly defined as it should be, but hopefully the new park and garden help notes should go some of the way to address this. The key part of these surveys is of course the condition elements. However, as we know so little about many of the examples included on the heritage asset map another aspect of the surveys is to make a note of what survives in the landscape. These kinds of details should be included in the comments box. For example, does part of the walled garden survive, has an original boundary hedge been retained or have the park boundaries been preserved but the features within the original park lost? Recording such details will really help to judge how future decisions will be made about these particular assets.
Two sample survey forms can be found below which will give you an idea of how to fill in the survey forms and the sort of comments that should be included in the comments box.
The evidence used to identify the areas of the parks and gardens in our dataset has been taken from Ordnance Survey 1st and 2nd edition maps (c.1880-1920) and they do not appear on later editions. It may be worth looking at the early OS maps before going out and undertaking your surveys as these early maps may give you an idea of some of the features that may still survive. These maps can be found on the OS old-maps website.
Another useful site is Parks and Gardens UK. This has some very useful information including an illustrated glossary of terms and garden histories.
Two other sites containing useful information are the Association of Garden Trusts and more locally the Lincolnshire Gardens Trust.