The garden at Biddulph Grange developed by James Bateman (1811–1897) is an amazing place, a real trip around the world with many rare and unusual plants, many of which would still be scribed as rare despite over 150 years passing since the garden was founded. Bateman was accomplished horticulturist and local landowner his family making their fortune from the coal and steel industry. He moved to Biddulph Grange around 1840, from nearby Knypersley Hall and once there he created the gardens with the aid of his friend and painter of seascapes Edward William Cooke. The gardens as such were meant to display specimens from Bateman's extensive and wide-ranging collection of plants but not just to display but also to act as the pleasure grounds for the associated house.
|View towards the house|
The garden at Biddulph Grange is a great example showing how gardens developed during Victorian era. A combination of the fascination and almost obsessive desire for plant hunting in the remote regions of the world, combined with the wealth generated as a result of Britain's industrialisation which led to many of the gentleman of the time wanting to be part of this newly emerging self made upper classes building large grand houses complete with a fantastic garden in which they could show off their newly acquired collections of plants and new introductions to the UK and of course demonstrate their wealth to their peers.
The property went through a number of owners before being bought by the National Trust in 1988, upon taking ownership the Trust restored the gardens and it is now open to the public. Sadly the house is not open, having been converted to private flats.
The gardens are easily accessible by road, and are also just a couple of miles from Congleton Train station.
If you are travelling from further afield then there is plenty to do in the area, Little Moreton Hall is close by and you can buy a joint ticket if you want to see both. The nearest larger town is Stoke on Trent, home to a number of other museums and attractions particularly related to the pottery industry. For a weekend break Stoke would make a good base, and the Holiday Inn in Stoke is well located.
The Garden are open daily from 11am until 5.30pm. For more information see the National Trust page.