Deepdene Gardens and Estate – free Guided Walk, Sunday 8th October
A joint event for LI London and LI South East Branch Members, friends and family.
Join us for a free guided walk around the historic Deepdene Estate in Dorking, Surrey, which includes the Grade II* listed Deepdene Gardens and Grade II* listed Hope Mausoleum. Deepdene traces its origins to the mid-17th century, when owner Charles Howard created one of the earliest true Italianate gardens in a natural steep sided dell. Over the next 200 years Deepdene attracted interest from garden designers and writers, including John Evelyn and John Aubrey, and from Thomas Hope, who acquired the Estate in 1808, significantly extending it and creating many of the Garden’s unique features. During the early part of the 20th century the Estate was broken up and fell into disrepair, although it went on to play an intriguing defence role during World War II. Supported by a Heritage Grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Mole Valley District Council (MVDC) has masterminded the restoration of key elements of the Gardens and the Hope Mausoleum, and created a new Heritage Trail which reconnects former areas of the Estate. The Gardens are now open to the public for the first time in history, while the new Deepdene Heritage Trail enables visitors to discover more about the history of this nationally significant historic Estate, its owners and its contribution to garden design spanning over three centuries.
Sunday 8th October 2017, 1.00pm-approx 4.00pm. You are welcome to visit the Gardens before the formal start of the visit. If you wish to have lunch, picnics are permitted in the Gardens, or there are plenty of options in the centre of Dorking.
Who can attend?
This event will be of interest to garden designers, landscape architects and architects, as well as students. It is a family-friendly event, so all LI London and LI South East members and their families are welcome. (All attendees must have a ticket). There is no formal play area or equipment for children, but this is a child-friendly landscape which will appeal to children of all ages. Well-behaved dogs on leads are welcome.
Meet at the parterre, next to the Embattled Tower at Deepdene Gardens, Deepdene Avenue, Dorking, Surrey. The entrance to The Trail and Gardens is via a footpath off Deepdene Avenue (A24), a few minutes’ walk south of Dorking from the Cockerel roundabout. You will find the entrance on your left, about 100 metres after the Kuoni office entrance as you walk southwards along the A24 from the roundabout. You can also access the Gardens via the Trail route from Dorking Golf Club.
Getting there and parking
By car: please note that there is no car parking at the Gardens. The nearest public car park is off Reigate Road next to Dorking Halls (satnav – use RH5 4AZ). Parking is free on Sundays. The Gardens are a 15-20 minute walk from the car park, mainly uphill but on well-surfaced pavements next to the A24. There are two disabled parking spaces for Blue Badge holders off the A24 close to the Mausoleum. For further information on location and accessibility please contact MVDC directly on 01306 885 001 (working hours only).
By train: from London, direct trains run from Waterloo and Victoria to Dorking main station (journey time approx. 54 mins – 1h 20 mins); from Guildford or Reading services run direct to Dorking Deepdene station (close to the Dorking main station). The walk to the Gardens from either station is approx. 20-25 minutes.
Bus number 22 travels from Dorking Station past the Gardens entrance off the A24 en route to Crawley. There is a stop just outside the Kuoni office entrance a few hundred metres before the pedestrian entrance to the Gardens further along the A24.
There are also taxis at Dorking main station.
The event will be led by the Project Officer from Mole Valley District Council, Alex Bagnall. We will begin with a guided tour of Deepdene Gardens, then follow part of the Deepdene Trail to Deepdene Terrace, which offers far-reaching views north and south, and then go on to the Hope Mausoleum in Chart Park (within the grounds of Dorking Golf Club), where by special arrangement we will have an opportunity to see inside.
The tour will end at Dorking Golf Club clubhouse, which has a sunny terrace with stunning far reaching views over Chart Park, part of the historic Deepdene Estate. The clubhouse is open to the public for drinks and refreshments.
We will aim to finish no later than 4pm.
The path from the A24 into Deepdene Gardens is fully accessible. Some parts of the Trail are, however, steep or rough and not suitable for buggies and wheelchairs. There is an alternative route from the Gardens to the Mausoleum and Dorking Golf Club via the footway by the A24. We will be covering approx. 1-1.5 miles in total. For further information on accessibility please contact MVDC directly on 01306 885 001 (working hours only).
There are no toilet facilities at the Gardens. The nearest facilities are at Dorking Golf Club or at Dorking Halls.
What to wear
There may be muddy areas and some steep paths, so appropriate footwear (walking shoes or similar) is recommended.
How to book
This is a free event, but booking is essential. Please ensure that all attendees have booked a ticket. Click here to book via Eventbrite.
To find out more
There is a wealth of information about the Deepdene project, together with maps, on the Mole Valley Website