Last weekend we visited the beautiful Sissinghurst Garden in Kent. The garden was created in the 1930s by the writer Vita Sackville-West and her politician husband Sir Harold Nicholson and now is managed by the National Trust. As members of the Bloomsbury set, Vita and Harold were an unconventional couple for their times. There is currently an exhibition about their marriage in one of there barns, well worth visiting to get in an incite into their lives.
Sissinghurst was built from the 15th century onwards but by the 1930s the estate was practically in ruins. About this time the couple looking for a new home, despite some misgivings about the scale of the project they bought the estate and set about revitalising the house and gardens. What visitors see now is testament tho their hard work and vision for the estate. The Sissinghurst garden is an outstanding example of early 20th century english garden design. There are lots of formal elements that Harold designed and then romantic and informal planting schemes devised by Vita. The whole garden is beautiful and our particular highlights included the world famous white garden, the cottage garden and the nut walk. Make sure you go up the old tower to get a bird’s eye view of the designs, it puts it all in perspective.
The garden is very popular and can get busy so time your trip accordinally. The Sissinghurst Estate has wonderful views of the Kentish Weald and their are signposted walks if you want to explore further. Being a National Trust property there is a lovely cafe and interesting shop. They also have a good supply of plants for sale if you are feeling inspired by what you have seen.