Country Life 15-Sep-2021

Published by TI Media Limited Country Life, the quintessential English magazine, is undoubtedly one of the biggest and instantly recognisable brands in the UK today. It has a unique core mix of contemporary country-related editorial and top end property advertising. Editorially, the magazine comments in-depth on a wide variety of subjects, such as architecture, the arts, gardens and gardening, travel, the countryside, field-sports and wildlife. With renowned columnists and superb photography Country Life delivers the very best of British life every week.

United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd
51 期号


a blooming shame

IT has been a topsy-turvy year in the garden: a dry April, then rains in May delaying the arrival of summer, followed by almost no rain in August, resulting in buds refusing to unfurl. Now, we have the RHS Chelsea Flower Show opening, for the first time in its 108-year history, in September (preview, page 74). For some exhibitors, the hold-up has proved too difficult to manage and, sadly, a few regulars have pulled out. But the RHS must be applauded for salvaging the season against all the odds. Many keen plantsmen are looking forward to a show that promises to be filled with an explosion of the fiery colours of late summer. Others, however, harbour concerns. At Tatton Park Flower Show, we saw a garden filled with nettles and weeds receive…

he who laughs last

THE ability of Frans Hals to paint portraits that can ‘live and breathe’ is much praised, and the subject of one particular painting seems to know something you don’t. Often referred to as the most handsome man in art history, The Laughing Cavalier is the work that secured the Dutch Master’s fame—not when it was painted in 1624, but in 1865, when the 4th Marquess of Hertford (founder of the Wallace Collection) and Baron James de Rothschild engaged in a sensational bidding duel at a sale in Paris. The Marquess won, paying 51,000 francs (more than six times the estimate) and the publicity that ensued dragged Hals from obscurity; his prices soared thereafter. From September 22, that knowing face will be reunited with its ‘friends’, laughing shoulder to shoulder with other…

how to shape our heritage

HISTORIC ENGLAND hopes to find four new commissioners to join its governing body and contribute to strategy. It is seeking candidates—particularly women and those from minority backgrounds —with experience in architectural history, planning, human resources, community engagement, IT, finance or the management of historic properties, as well as a solid commitment to preserving the country’s cultural heritage. Applications close on October 4. To find out more, visit CP…

hedge your bets

THE CPRE is urging the Government to set targets to expand Britain’s hedgerow network by 40% by 2050 and increase protection for existing hedges, after research revealed this would benefit both the environment and the rural economy. Britain has lost half its hedges since the Second World War and, although the past few years have seen a replanting drive, many of the remaining ‘miles’ are in a poor state. A critical tool to tackle climate change and the biodiversity crisis, hedges provide food and shelter for wildlife and join up potentially isolated habitats, creating corridors across the countryside. Hedgerows account for about 5% of all carbon soaked up on farms—so much that the Climate Change Committee itself recommended the same 40% target to help Britain become carbon-neutral by 2050—and they ‘contribute…

don’t look down

A MAGNIFICENT feat of gardening and dizzying heights is under way at Powis Castle, as the annual trim of 300-year-old yew hedges begins. Every autumn, it takes 12 weeks to trim the 14 shapely ‘tumps’ and formal hedging, with perhaps 10 weeks spent 46ft up in the air on a hydraulic cherry picker. ‘These extraordinary tumps started out as topiaries in the 1680s, then the landscape movement came along and William Emes reshaped the gardens at Powis,’ explains head gardener Dave Swanton. ‘Back in the early 1900s, it took 10 gardeners to trim each one using ladders, scythes, hand sickles and traditional shears—now, it’s one man on a cherry picker with a hedge trimmer. Their shapes are constantly evolving, from having ladders leaning up against them over the years, snowfall, dieback,…

good week for

Dragonflies They're not complaining about climate change: six new species have travelled north to Britain in the past 25 years and most are increasing, especially the emperor Farmers Today (September 15) is Back British Farming Day, an NFU initiative to place the industry centre stage; MPs have been given wheatsheaf badges to wear during the farming debate Sudden fame A section of hitherto-unsung tarmac driveway in the Gloucestershire town of Winchcombe will be displayed at the Natural History Museum; a plaque will mark the point where a meteorite crash-landed in February Lovely jubbly BBC archivists have uncovered hundreds of ‘incredibly rare' photographs taken during the filming of Only Fools and Horses, which celebrates its 40th anniversary this year Thomas Cromwell Wolf Hall author Hilary Mantel compared her subject favourably with today's politicians, tartly observing that ‘he wouldn't have gone on…