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February 2024 Lecture
-by ZOOM

Bramshill Hampshire: the mystery of its historic gardens and botanical paintings

A talk by Dr Ann Christine Benson FSA FRHistS, writer and lecturer on designed landscape history.

Monday 12 February 2024 at 7.00 pm

We are very pleased to welcome Dr Ann Benson, writer and lecturer on designed landscape history specializing in the Tudor and Stuart period. She is best known for her research on the ancestral homes of the Dukes of Beaufort, namely Troy House and Raglan Castle Monmouthshire. More recently, Ann was awarded Leverhulme Emeritus Fellowship Funding for researching the garden history of the Cambridge colleges founded in medieval and Tudor times and for which she also holds a Beaufort Fellowship at St John’s College Cambridge. Her research on architecture and garden history commenced on retirement from being an academic in science education at Oxford, Bristol and the Open University and serving as a consultant on assessment for the Cabinet Office.

Bramshill House, in north-east Hampshire is one of the largest surviving Jacobean Mansions in England. A house from the 1350s was largely demolished by Edward la Zouche, 11th Baron Zouche (a favorite of James 1) in 1605 when he began to build the Bramshill House of today. Its design shows the influence of the Italian Renaissance. The formal gardens and parkland were also laid out by Edward la Zouche in the early 1600s.

Ann’s lecture will trace the creation of these beautiful gardens and designed landscapes and will cover their subsequent modifications, including the significance of Edward as a horticulturist and creator of a botanic garden- and employer of the eminent Flemish Botanist, Matthias De L’Obel.


Most interestingly, one room overlooking the walled garden at Bramshill is entirely lined with panelling containing unique botanical paintings; Ann will present her exciting new research on identifying the date and source of these images.

Booking: Please book online before Wednesday 7th February. The tickets are £5 each. Non-members welcome.


A link will then be forwarded to everyone for the lecture a few days beforehand. The talk, followed by questions will last approximately 90 minutes. Please note this lecture will be only available as a live recording due to the contents being currently in production for publication.


Queries: Kim Hacker at

All pictures courtesy of Ann Benson

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