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Gardening in Wartime: A selection of WWI resources


We have compiled a selection of resources, primarily online, which relate to World War I and how it affected historic parks and gardens in the UK.

Association of Gardens Trusts Newsletter 28, Autumn 2013 (page 4):
Westfield Memorial Village

The British prisoners who gardened through the war The story uncovered by the Royal Horticultural Society of a ‘forgotten’ group of British men who set up a horticultural society in a German internment camp is set to be revealed in a new exhibition in October 2014, to commemorate the centenary of the start of the First World War. Read more about the Ruhleben project and the call for information from the RHS.

Centenary Fields A national initiative which aims to protect war memorial fields, parks and green spaces created in memory of those who lost their lives during the First World War. Led by national charity Fields in Trust, in partnership with The Royal British Legion, Centenary Fields will ensure at least one of these spaces is protected in each local authority throughout the UK, creating a nationwide living legacy from the First World War Centenary.

Chelsea Physic Garden Learn about how WWI affected the Chelsea Physic Garden, members of staff, production of the seed list and supply of medicinal plants, and how it welcomed wounded soldiers for rest and recuperation.

The Definitive Collection British Pathé has a collection of WWI films called The Definitive Collection. We have found two relevant videos so far:

First World War Centenary Partnership From 2014 to 2018, across the world, nations, communities and individuals of all ages will come together to mark, commemorate and remember the lives of those who lived, fought and died in the First World War. The First World War Centenary Programme is a vibrant global programme of cultural events, exhibitions and activities, and online resources that connect current and future generations with the lives, stories and impact of the First World War. The programme is presented by the First World War Centenary Partnership, a network of local, regional, national and international cultural and educational organisations, led by the Imperial War Museum.

First World War Centenary Woods A project led by the Woodland Trust to honour all those who took part in the war effort by creating thousands of acres of commemorative woodland that will stand as a tribute for centuries to come. Visit their website to learn more.

Gaffney, Angela, Aftermath: Remembering the Great War in Wales (University of Wales Press, 1998)

The Garden Museum Hosted a major exhibition, Gardens and War, from September 2014 to December 2014. To learn more about the exhibition and associated lectures and events visit the Gardens and War page.

Heritage of Wales News The blog of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales. Follow the blog to learn about what the Royal Commission is doing to commemorate WWI.

Historic England:
Caring for Heritage, War Memorials
Types of War Memorial
The Listing and Grading of War Memorials
Introductions to Heritage Assets, War Memorial Parks and Gardens
Conservation Bulletin, Issue 71, Winter 2013: The First World War

Historic Houses Wartime Trail The trail features HHA member properties across Great Britain and Northern Ireland, all of which have a story to tell about their property in times of conflict, whether this be the Civil War or World War One.

Home Front Legacy 1914-1918 The Council for British Archaeology is working with Historic England and partners across the UK to help local communities identify and map the remains of the First World War in Britain. Local people can help to document and preserve our stories, and vulnerable remains, for future generations. Home Front Legacy 1914-1918.

Imperial War Museum's War Memorials Archive An online database of more than 65,000 war memorials located throughout the United Kingdom, Channel Islands and Isle of Man.

National Library of Scotland A collection of First World War photographs.

National Trust, Commemorating the First World War Commemorating the lives of those who were there on the battlefield and on the home front, and sharing their stories. Learn about the war memorials the National Trust cares for, their programme of visual art and poetry linked to WWI, see relevant collections and hear stories about people associated with the landscapes they look after. Our War Memorials, Explore Places with First World War History, Country House Life During the First World War, Women's Stories From the First World War

The National Archives Marking the centenary of the First World War with an extensive programme, spanning the period from 2014 - 2019. To find out more, visit the dedicated First World War site.

Occasional Papers from the RHS Lindley Library Published September 2014. Volume Twelve: Horticulture and the First World War

Photographs of Alexandra Palace as an internment camp Black and white photographs from The Imperial War Museums collections.

Twentieth Century Society War Memorials Tours The material derives from six tours of memorials generated by the First World War. Two were in London and four were on the Continent. Itineraries, photographs and other information is available.

War Memorials Online A project led by War Memorials Trust encouraging the general public to contribute to a greater understanding of the condition of war memorials (including memorial landscapes) in the UK. Contributors can upload condition information, photos and location details as well as highlighting any concerns about the conservation of these important community and historical sources for future generations. To get involved visit:

War Memorials Archive Blog, Lost Gardeners of the First World War

Welcome Library This guide highlights primary source material from the Archives and Manuscripts Collection, relating to World War I.

World War One at Home is a growing collection of stories that show how WW1 affected the people and places of the UK and Ireland. The BBC has partnered with Imperial War Museums and the Arts and Humanities Research Council. World War One at Home

World War Zoo wartime gardens project at Newquay Zoo Blog, “Such is the Price of Empire”: The Lost Gardeners of Kew in the First World War