Formal gardens laid out in 1855 with the construction of the Pauper Lunatic Asylum. The garden consisted of terraces, formal parterres enclosed by hedges. A field to the south was divided into petal shapes with each petal planted with a different crop. In 1992 part of the grounds were developed for a supermarket.
The hospital and grounds were constructed in the mid-19th century.
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Kendall's original design was considered too costly and consultations were held with the Commissioners in Lunacy in London. In 1855 George Fowler Jones of York, and Samuel Hill, the medical supervisor of the West Riding Asylum drew up a design which won approval for work to begin which consisted of a long range of buildings which can be seen from the road.
To the south, formal parterres on a terrace were repeated either side of the main entrance. Both parterres were enclosed by hedges, each with a summerhouse overlooking the drive, and a bowling green in the field beyond.
In 1859 the greater number of patients were agricultural labourers, who were set to work developing the grounds and setting up a farm. A border wall for fruit trees, 213 meters long, was made along the north and east boundary of the site.
The field to the south was divided into large petal shapes and each petal cultivated with a different crop. The sweeping curves of the design dwarf the scale of the Hospital with its formal parterres. The vegetables and crops fed the patients, but the field was ploughed up in 1917 'at the insistence of the War Agricultural Committee'.
Today the hospital has been enlarged and the terrace remains but without its formal Victorian parterre and the petals in the field have been replaced by a hedged enclosure, sports pitches, extensive lawns and specimen trees dotted within the site.
In 1992 permission was given to develop part of the grounds for a supermarket which has now been built.
Terrace, Parterre, Summerhouse, Lawn, Hedge, Bowling Green
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Detailed HistoryIn September 1856, the Earl of Hardwicke laid the foundation stone of the new Pauper Lunatic Asylum, which was to stand on a chalk knoll in 22.2 hectares of land on the edge of the Fens.
- Mid 19th Century
- pp 72-73The Gardens of Cambridgeshire