Our evening visit this July was to the Gibberd Garden near Harlow.
Members were told about the life of Sir Frederick Gibberd and his wish that the house and garden should be open to the public. A long-standing family feud nearly prevented this, and the property was put up for sale. However,
with public donations and loans, the garden was saved.
The Gibberd Garden Trust was formed and, with a team of volunteers, now looks after it. The listed Grade II, sevenacre garden is sited on a small valley which slopes downhillto the Pincey Brook (which rises near Elsenham) and which forms one of the boundaries. The garden is a mixture of intimate spaces with pools and seats enclosed by shrubs, brookside walks, glades and lawns which give wide vistas with many mature trees.
There are over 80 modern sculptures, pots and architectural pieces positioned throughout the garden. As the designer of Harlow New Town, Gibberd purchased the property in 1957. It was in the countryside, on the edge of the Harlow-Sheering border; one wonders what he would think as the new Gilden Park Estate creeps ever closer to Marsh Lane, the other boundary of his garden!