York Gate is a one-acre garden tucked away behind the ancient church in Adel, on the northern outskirts of Leeds
Created by the Spencer family during the second half of the twentieth century in the Arts and Crafts style, and now owned and managed by Perennial, it is a garden of immense craftsmanship, widely recognised as one of the most innovative small gardens of the period.
York Gate was bequeathed to Perennial in 1994 so that so that it could continue to live on and be enjoyed by the garden-loving public. Perennial is the UK’s only charity dedicated to helping people working in horticulture when times get tough, providing free advice, support and financial assistance to people of all ages working in or retired from horticulture.
When Frederick Spencer bought York Gate in Adel near Leeds in 1951, it was nothing but a house surrounded by farmland
He laid down the bones of the garden, but after his death in 1963, it was his son Robin who took over the development and design.
Inspired by some of the outstanding gardens of the Arts & Crafts movement such as Hidcote, he created in just one acre, a garden which by the early eighties was regarded by many as one of the best small gardens in the world.
Like Hidcote, York Gate is divided up into a distinct number of ‘garden rooms’, using yew and beech hedges. What makes this garden exceptional is the exquisite detail Robin incorporated within each part, while using his great skill to unite them into a coherent whole through a continuous succession of vistas and focal points.
Robin died suddenly and prematurely in 1982 at the age of only forty-seven. For the next twelve years his mother, Sybil nurtured the garden. A gifted plantswoman, she continued to develop the fascinating plant collection, which remains today.
On Sybil Spencer’s death in 1994, York Gate garden was bequeathed to Perennial. A programme to develop areas in need of restoration is ongoing but the charity will continue to maintain the garden in sympathy with the Spencers’ design and in accordance with Sybil Spencer’s wish that it will continue to attract visitors for both education and pleasure.
Perennial is the UK’s only charity dedicated to helping people working in horticulture when times get tough, providing free advice, support and financial assistance to people of all ages working in or retired from horticulture. Our national team of trained, professional Caseworkers and Debt Advisers visit people in their own homes and provide free, confidential advice and financial assistance for as long as it takes to get people back on their feet.
|I loved this little potting shed.|
Tea Rooms serve sandwiches and savoury platters as well as a selection of freshly baked cakes.
Hope you have enjoyed your photo trip round the gardens, such a lovely place.
(All the information is from the York Gate Garden's website but the photos are mine)
9 April – 28 September 2017
Sunday to Thursday (and Bank Holiday Mondays): 12:30 – 4:30pm
Evenings in June
Every Wednesday in June:
7th, 14th, 21st & 28th: 6:30pm – 9pm