Practically on our doorstep, just a few minutes’ walk away, is Compton Acres, one of the finest, privately-owned ornamental gardens in England.
Constructed in 1920 by Mr Thomas Simpson, an entrepreneur who amassed his fortune by manufacturing margarine, Compton Acres consists of five themed sub-gardens. The Italian garden features water fountains, statuary, topiary and mass, colourful plantings. The rock and water gardens are an example of the arts and crafts style of landscape design and are home to more than 300 kinds of plants including mature, slow growing conifers. The Wooded Valley features a woodland garden with winding pathways and dramatic waterfalls. The Heather Garden, at its most colourful in spring, features many species of heather. And the Japanese Garden, regarded as one of the finest in the country, features a Tea House draped with Japanese wisteria and many other plants native to Japan.
Visitors can enjoy Compton Acres all year round. There is also a plant centre, where you can buy a wide range of perennials, shrubs and seasonal bedding plants, including unusual and exotic plant species. And there is a lovely café and a gift shop with a great selection of children’s toys, jewellery, gifts, kitchenware, confectionary and alcohol.