The Grand Etang

Phillip.Lindley | December 1, 2012

Immediately to the north-west of Boughton House are the remains of the Grand Etang, one of the earliest surviving features from the original gardens and designed landscape.  It is shown in Gabriel Delahaye’s 1712 plan, where the parterres in front of the house to the west culminated in basins and pools at the head of a T shape, beyond which was the canalised river.

Gareth Fitzpatrick MBE sent me the photograph here on the twenty-seventh of November, with the following comments:

The Grand Etang was ‘originally designed to be a reflecting pool with a large jet d’eaux (not easy to achieve in the late 17th century in a landform with no obvious head of water); over the years benign neglect has left us with the sculptured outline of a normally dry basin.  As my photograph shows this bad weather gave an image presaging the next stage of our Landscape Restoration Project, the reinstating of The Grand Etang, which is due to be started this time next year: let us hope it is drier then!’

Three days earlier, as I walked the gardens myself, the Grand Etang had already begun to fill.




The restoration projects at Boughton demonstrate how the landscapes of the past can be revivified and rejuvenated for the future.


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