The Selby Times this week rather bizarrely reports a non-local, but interesting, story about the Cotswolds’ Batsford Arboretum.
Apparently, the Arboretum, near Moreton-in-Marsh, has been given an archive of historical documents by the granddaughter of its former gardener, the appropriately named James Gardner.
James was head gardener in the Cotswolds between 1910 and 1917, having been appointed at the age of 25. He left many photographs, articles and letters relating to Batsford in the 1910s, including details of the wages given to the Arboretum’s gardeners.
This was during the time when the Mitford sisters lived at Batsford – their grandfather, the 1st Baron Redesdale, inherited the estate in the 1880s, and their father became owner in 1916.
James Gardner’s granddaughter, Frances Toovey, has presented the documents to Batsford Arboretum, to be used in the visitor centre that is currently being developed there.
You can read the original Selby Times story here.