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Great Gardens of England and Hampton Court Flower Show

Program Number: 19323RJ
Start and End Dates:
7/1/2013 - 7/12/2013; 6/29/2015 - 7/10/2015;
Duration: 11 nights
Location: England, UK:England
Price starting at: $3,167.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Homes & Gardens
Meals: 28; 10 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 10 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Vegetarian; Low Salt; Gluten Free    

Survey the heritage of the English garden from the 18th century to the present day. In Kent, the “Garden of England”, and in the Cotswolds, renowned for beautiful countryside and quaint villages, examine a broad range of garden styles that have complemented homes, palaces and castles for centuries, and gain professional insights into selected species, climate and soil conditions with an expert horticulturalist. Our gardens experience culminates in a field trip to largest flower show in the world: Hampton Court Flower Show.




Highlights

• Relish a day at the world’s largest flower show at Hampton Court Palace.
• Meet privately with the director of the Painswick Rococo Garden Trust.
• Venture through the Cotswolds to Chipping Campden and the unique spa town of Bath, and enjoy the company of expert horticulturalist, botanist, landscape ecologist and garden historian Jane Longland throughout your journey.



Activity Particulars

Walking, standing in gardens up to three hours; uneven surfaces, stairs in historic buildings.




Date Specific Information

7-1-2013, 6-29-2015

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Itinerary Summary

Arrival London, coach to Ashford, Kent, 4 nights; coach via Wisley to Cheltenham, 4 nights; coach to London, 2 nights; departure.



Overnight flight from the U.S.
1 night
Arrival London
Coach to Ashford, Kent
4 nights

Begin by considering Edwardian gardens and planting associations, and explore the town of Rye while taking the coastal route to Great Dixter in Sussex. Marvel at the colors on display at the garden of landscaping visionary Christopher Lloyd, and see Lutyens' original garden designs as they remain today. Shift your focus to 18th-century English landscape schools and Victorian gardens on an excursion to Canterbury and Lady FitzWalter’s Goodnestone Park Gardens. Enjoy one of the world’s most celebrated gardens at Sissinghurst Castle.



Coach via Wisley to Cheltenham
4 nights

At the Royal Horticultural Society’s 240-acre Wisley Gardens, learn how the finest flowers and vegetables are identified in the trial fields from among countless new introductions, then explore the "Jewel of the Cotswolds," Chipping Campden. At celebrated Hidcote Manor Gardens in the North Cotswolds, walks reveal an Arts and Crafts masterpiece and stunning panoramas across the Vale of Evesham. The Arts and Crafts theme continues at Kiftsgate Court Garden, while a journey to Painswick Rococo Garden takes you back to the flamboyant English Rococo period, with a private introduction by the director of the Painswick Rococo Garden Trust. Explore the spa town of Bath and the fine 18th-century landscape garden at Stourhead.



Coach to London
2 nights
Departure

Stop on your way to London at the birthplace of Winston Churchill, the Baroque masterpiece Blenheim Palace. Your comprehensive English garden experience culminates in a field trip to the Hampton Court Flower Show, to see inspirational show gardens, learn how to “grow your own” and cook with produce, take an early start to beat the crowds.




England

It was the seat of an empire on which the sun never set. It has been Merry, Dickensian and Victorian. It has given us common law, Shakespeare, tennis, the Rolls-Royce and the Beatles. England and its people have played an outsize role in shaping world history. It is a country whose past, politics, culture and characters never cease to captivate.



Accommodations
Ashford: Three-star modern hotel. Cheltenham: Three-star hotel at the edge of this elegant spa town. London: Four-star hotel that was once the London residence of the Vanderbilt family, restored to its former glory.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Jane Longland

Dr. Jane Longland has been an expert leader on Road Scholar programs for a decade, sharing her deep knowledge of ornamental horticulture, garden history and landscape design. She earned her PhD in botany at the University of Edinburgh before teaching and doing research in the field for nearly a quarter century. For the past six years, Dr. Longland has traveled extensively in Europe, the United States and Asia to study the world’s gardens and teach others about them.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Bridgewood Manor
  Chatham, UK:England 4 nights
   Cheltenham Chase Hotel
  Cheltenham., UK:England 4 nights
   Radisson Edwardian Vanderbilt
  London, England, UK:England 2 nights
 Bridgewood Manor
Type: Three-Star Hotel
  Description: Modern hotel with an attractive inner courtyard and interesting lounge areas. Inside there are 2 open fires for added cosiness along with a fine old stone fireplace and reclaimed timbers from local churches and manors to create a feel of a more traditional country house.
  Contact info: Bridgewood Roundabout
Walderslade Woods
Chatham, Kent,  ME5 9AX UK:England
phone: +44 1634 201333
web: www.QHotels.co.uk
  Room amenities: Direct dial telephone, satelitte TV, tea and coffe making facilities. WiFi access in public areas with 2 hours free in all bedrooms.
  Facility amenities: Squires Restaurant, bars. Spa and treatment area, steam room, sauna, indoor heated swimming pool.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior:  For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to travelinfo@roadscholar.org
  Check in time: 2:00 PM

 Cheltenham Chase Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Superb views over Coopers Hill and the Gloucestershire countryside.
  Contact info: Sturdington Road
Brockworth
Gloucester,  GL3 4BP UK:England
phone: +44 1452 519988
web: www.qhotels.co.uk
  Room amenities: Air conditioning. Direct dial telephione, remote control TV with pay for view movies. Tea and coffee making facilities. Hairdryer. Trouser press and ironing board. Free internet access. 24 hour room service.
  Facility amenities: Restaurant and bar. Leisure facilities and spa.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Radisson Edwardian Vanderbilt
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The hotel was once the London residence of the Vanderbilt family. Many original features have been carefully restored to their former glory including stained glass windows, wood panelled rooms and its magnificent artistic ceiling.
  Contact info: 68-86 Cromwell Road
London,  SW7 5BT UK:England
phone: +44 20 7761 9000
web: www.radissonedwardian.com/hotels/gbvander
  Room amenities: Each room offers a mini bar, air conditioning, hairdryer,in room safe, iron and trouser press, tea and coffee making facilities and complimentary wireless Internet access. Direct dial telephone, satellite TV.
  Facility amenities: Restaurant, bar. Complimentary wireless Internet access , complimentary newspaper, 24 hour front desk, 24 hour room service, currency exchange, valet service available for laundry. Fitness room. Mobile phone rental. Business centre.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after:  For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to travelinfo@roadscholar.org
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
A light lunch is served at 12:30pm in the hotel on arrival day. Welcome meeting at 5:00pm before dinner. You will be staying at Bridgewood Manor that night.
  End of Program:
After breakfast on departure day unless flights depart earlier. Breakfast ends at 10:00am and check out is by 11:00am. You will be staying at Radisson Edwardian Vanderbilt the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
No parking.
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: As above.
To Start of Program
  Location:  Chatham
  Nearest city or town:  Chatham
  Transportation to site: Program Only Participants (POP) will be transferred on group arrival days so long as they complete the Participant INformation Form on-line or hard copy in the Preparatory Materials and are arriving/departing on the group travel dates at London Heathgrow. Please include departure and arrival date, departure airport, airline, flight number, arrival airport, date and time. We recommend completing the form on-line as information will be kept for future Underground and buses available to central London. From Victoria take the train to Chatham. From there take a taxi to the hotel.
  From End of Program
  Location:  London, England
  Nearest city or town:  London.
  Nearest airport:  London Heathrow and Gatwick.
  Transportation from site: Program Only Participants (POP) will be transferred on group arrival days so long as they complete the Participant Information Form on-line or hard copy in the Preparatory Materials and are arriving/departing on the group travel dates at London Heathgrow. Please include departure and arrival date, departure airport, airline, flight number, arrival airport, date and time. We recommend completing the form on-line as information will be kept for future Underground ( the hotel is on the District and Circle and Piccadilly lines) or taxi to London Paddington station for the Heathrow Express or London Victoria for the Gatwick Express.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1:
(Monday, July 1)
   
 In Transit: Overnight flight

Day 2:
(Tuesday, July 2)
   
 Arrive To: London and transfers by private car to Chatham.
 Lunch: A light lunch is served in the hotel.
 Afternoon: Free afternoon. Introduction to the programme with Jane Longland, our Course Director, at 5:00 pm. Welcome meeting and introductions.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Bridgewood Manor
Meals Included: Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Great Dixter.
(Wednesday, July 3)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Our lectures this morning consider "10-17th Century Gardens" and "18th Century English Landscape School".
 Lunch: Lunch allowance..
 Afternoon: Explore the town of Rye whilst taking the coastal route to Great Dixter in Sussex. Marvel at the colour schemes of Christopher Lloyd's garden at Great Dixter and see Lutyens' original garden designs as they remain today. Great Dixter was the family home of Christopher Lloyd, who devoted his lifetime to creating one of the most experimental, exciting and constantly changing gardens of our time. Incorporating many medieval buildings, the gardens surround the house, each complementing the other. There is a wide variety of interest from yew topiary, carpets of meadow flowers, the colourful tapestry of mixed borders (including the famous Long Border), natural ponds, a formal pool and the exuberant Exotic Garden.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Bridgewood Manor
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Canterbury and Goodnestone Park Gardens.
(Thursday, July 4)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Hear two lectures: "Victorian Gardens" and "Edwardian Gardens".
 Lunch: Packed lunch.
 Afternoon: Take an excursion to Canterbury where you will see the magnificent Cathedral (external view) and city walls. Free time. Then discover Goodnestone Park Gardens-a haven of beautiful tranquillity hidden away in south-east Kent. The gardens have many centuries of history behind them and have been created by generations of the FitzWalter family who have lived here since they built the house. The gardens have been brought to their present level of acclaimed quality during the last forty years.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Bridgewood Manor
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Lecture: "Modern Gardens and Hampton Court Flower Show".Sissinghurst Castle Gardens
(Friday, July 5)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: This morning our lecture brings us up to date with "Modern Gardens" before a talk on Hampton Court Flower Show. We then travel to one of England's most famous gardens at Sissinghurst Castle.
 Lunch: A lunch allowance is given.
 Afternoon: Sissinghurst Castle Gardens is the creation of Vita Sackville-West and her husband Sir Harold Nicolson. Surrounded by lovely unspoilt Wealden countryside Sissinghurst is a treasure trove for gardeners with romantic little compartments (rooms) filled with colourful floral displays, lakeside and woodland walks all in the intimate setting in the grounds of an Elizabethan mansion. The White Room and rose garden are spectacular in July.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Bridgewood Manor
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: RHS Wisley.
(Saturday, July 6)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: Transfer by coach to the Cotswolds via RHS Wisley, Woking. The Royal Horticultural Society's Wisley is one of Britain’s best loved garden with 97ha (240 acres) offering a fascinating blend of the beautiful with practical and innovative design and cultivation techniques. For many, it is the beauty and tranquility of the garden that captures the imagination, with its richly planted borders, luscious rose gardens and the exotica of the glasshouses, but a closer look reveals the real value of Wisley. In the trials fields, the finest flowers and vegetables are identified from the countless new introductions. Elsewhere in the garden, cultivation techniques, such as composting or pleaching, are tried and tested, and a series of model gardens answers the needs of a variety of conditions and circumstances.
 Lunch: A lunch allowance is given.
 Afternoon: Transfer continues.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Cheltenham Chase Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Hidcote Manor Gardens. Kiftsgate Court Garden.
(Sunday, July 7)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: Explore the "Jewel of the Cotswolds" on a field trip to Chipping Campden as we pass through the surrounding landscape of undulating valleys , quiet rivers and idyllic villages. We then visit Hidcote Manor Gardens, one of celebrated 20th-century garden in the beautiful North Cotswolds. Walks around the garden reveal an Arts & Crafts masterpiece with a series of outdoor rooms each with its own unique character. Hidcote is nestled in the Cotswolds with stunning panoramas across the Vale of Evesham.
 Lunch: We take lunch out at Kiftsgate.
 Afternoon: The Arts and Crafts theme continues at Kiftsgate Court Garden-made by Heather Muir with much help from Major Johnston of Hidcote. A woodland garden steps down the hillside to a half-moon swimming pool. Many features are typical of the Arts and Crafts period: herbaceous borders, a four square garden, a white garden, a yellow border, a rockery, lawns and a bluebell wood. We have a brief stop in Stow on the Wold before returning to the hotel.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Cheltenham Chase Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Painswick Rococo Garden.
(Monday, July 8)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: Journeying to the beautiful Cotswold town of Painswick we explore the honey-stone architecture before stepping back in time to the flamboyant English Rococo period at Painswick Rococo Garden. This gem of a garden, which was originally laid out in the 18th century, is set in a hidden Cotswold valley with magnificent views of the surrounding countryside. Enjoy an exclusive introduction by the Director of the Painswick Rococo Garden Trust, who also happens to be a remote decendent of the original 18th century creator.
 Lunch: Participants own choice.
 Afternoon: Free afternoon.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Cheltenham Chase Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 9: Stourhead.
(Tuesday, July 9)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: After an early breakfast and start our excursion to Bath takes us through history from Roman Baths to magnificent Georgian crescents . Then explore one of the finest examples of 18th century landscape gardens at Stourhead. Stourhead is more a work of art than a garden with its classical Italianate temples, grottoes, lake and bridges and Palladian-style house.
 Lunch: In Stourhead Gardens restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field trip continues.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Cheltenham Chase Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Blenheim Palace.
(Wednesday, July 10)
   
 Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.
 Morning: We transfer to London via the birthplace of Winston Churchill, Blenheim Palace. The Palace is a Baroque masterpiece surrounded by a Capability Brown designed park and lake. The magnificent water terrace gardens are the work of French architect Achille Duchene.
 Lunch: In Blenheim.
 Afternoon: The transfer continues and we arrive at the hotel for check-in.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Radisson Edwardian Vanderbilt
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Hampton Court Flower Show.
(Thursday, July 11)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Our gardens experience culminates in a field trip to largest flower show in the world -Hampton Court Flower Show. We depart early after breakfast to avoid the crowds.
 Lunch: Excluded.
 Afternoon: Continues. Depart HCP at 4:00pm.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: Farewell meeting.
   
Accommodations: Radisson Edwardian Vanderbilt
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12:
(Friday, July 12)
   
 Depart From: London for return flights to North America.
 Breakfast: In the hotel unless transfers for flight departures are early.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Cheltenham. Cheltenham.
Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museum, Holst Birthplace Museum, Chedworth Roman Villa, Pittville Pump Room. For additional information, visit www.visitcheltenham.gov.uk/
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


A Little History of British Gardening


Author: Jenny Uglow


Description: This book is easy to read and contains a wealth of factual information interspersed with social history and entertaining anecdotes, written by a prize-winning biographical author.



A Photographic Garden History


Author: Roger Phillips and Nicky Foy


Description: Highly recommended



Take Chelsea Home Practical Inspiration from the Chelsea Flower Show


Author: Chris Young


Description: This is a super armchair browsing book crammed with pictures and design ideas from the Chelsea Flower Shows 2005-2010 to give you an idea of what to expect at the two top Royal Horticultural Shows: Chelsea and Hampton Court.



The English Garden


Author: Ursula Buchan


Description: The beautiful colour photographs enhance a well-written and entertaining read, neither an academic and heavily referenced work, nor a mere “coffee-table” book, from a horticultural journalist/author.



The History of Gardens


Author: Christopher Thacker


Description: A classic and still one of the best books for world-wide coverage of garden history, written by a professional garden historian. Out of printy but widely available from online sources.



The National Trust Book of the English Garden


Author: Richard Bisgrove


Description: An excellent scholarly read concentrating on English garden history from medieval to modern times, written by a university lecturer on the subject. Out of print but widely available from online sources.



Yew and Non Yew


Author: James Bartholomew


Description: Most definitely tongue-in-cheek, this humorous book explores the subtleties of British horticultural snobbery. This is why we have changed garden styles to the latest fashions so many times in past centuries. Already slightly out of date (Dahlias are definitely “Yew” now) nevertheless, it may help to explain why gnomes are still officially banned at Chelsea and Hampton Court Shows! Out of print but widely available from online sources.





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