Compton Verney secures HLF funding to restore Capability Brown's parkland

By Sarah Jackson | 02 December 2013

The grounds of the award-winning Compton Verney will be restored in order to preserve and celebrate the designs of one of England's finest landscape gardeners

Exterior of an eighteenth century country mansion with a body of water in the foreground.
Exterior of Compton Verney© 2013 John Cleary Photography
A project to preserve and restore Compton Verney’s celebrated landscape, designed by 18th century landscaping great Capability Brown, has secured support from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The award-winning art museum has won a first round pass, meaning that the project has met HLF conditions for funding. Compton Verney now has up to two years to submit its final proposals to compete for a firm award.

To help develop these plans, a development fund of £179,656 has also been awarded.

"Compton Verney has enriched the regional cultural landscape for the past nine years," said Director Dr Steven Parissien, adding that organisers were "delighted" with the support.

"This grant will enable us to fully exploit and harness the astonishing potential of our historic context, thus benefiting both the local community and visitors from further afield.”

The Compton Verney Restoration Project seeks to renovate the landscape gardens designed by Brown, including a rare Grade I-listed Chapel.

Planner aim to invigorate visitors with eyecatchers highlighting the site’s history of pioneering art, architectural change and ecological diversity.

This includes restoring the 18th century chapel as a music venue and building a new Interpretation Centre to provide context about the site’s landscape, history and ecology, as well as much-needed visitor facilities.

Brown’s landscapes will be secured and developed to increase the biodiversity of the area, with some of the Georgian pathways recreated for visitors to enjoy. A contemporary bridge will also be added, drawing attention to the history of the site in new ways.

The project’s ultimate aim is to enable Compton Verney to use the landscape as a platform that brings together a wide range of interests – art, architecture, landscape design, music, history, exercise and ecology – to engage with new audiences in new ways.

“This investment will complement the recently restored Ice House, making this a marvelous heritage asset for future generations to learn from and enjoy," said Reyahn King, the Head of the Fund for the West Midlands.
Follow Compton Verney on Twitter @ComptonVerney.

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Interior of an eighteenth century chapel.
Interior of chapel designed by Capability Brown, 1776-9.© Compton Verney
Photograph of a stone bridge with sphinx statues.
Adam Bridge, Compton Verney, taken March 2012.© Photograph by Giles Vicat, courtesy of Compton Verney

Follow Sarah Jackson on Twitter @SazzyJackson.

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