|Stowe Landscape Gardens, Buckinghamshire|
|Managed by:||National Trust|
|OS grid reference:||SP 682 364 (New Inn Farm)|
|Nearest postcode:||MK18 5EQ|
|Usual work:||Hedgerow maintenance, habitat creation|
Created in the 18th century, Stowe Landscape Gardens is one of Europeís foremost landscape gardens, containing three lakes and a vast array of flora and fauna, vistas and open spaces. There is also a 300 hectare historic parkland containing woodland and a deer park. The National Trust, who cares for these spectacular gardens plan to transform a derelict coaching inn (New Inn) and farmhouse into a new visitors centre. To compensate for some lost habitat an extensive programme of habitat creation around the new building is planned. This includes the reinstatement of hedgerows, patches of scrub, and additional protection for the nearby badger sets and great-crested newt habitat. In addition, the dilapidated boundary fences and piles of rubbish and scrap will be removed. In 2009 OCV will be helping with the hedge creation work and building habitat piles.
Flora and Fauna
Stowe landscape Gardens contains a large number of species of trees and plants ranging from native species to specimen plants that are rare to Britain. The large areas of open spaces support wild flowers in addition to native species such as bluebells recently planted at the site. The vast number of trees, hedges and scrub at Stowe landscape Gardens provides perfect habitat for wide variety of birds, whilst the lakes provide haven for numerous species of fish, waterfowl and amphibians. Numbers of the great-crested newt, Britainís largest newt species, have been declining in recent years making habitat such as that provided at Stowe landscape Gardens even more important. Mammals such as badgers, moles and rabbits thrive at the gardens and parkland.
At Stowe Landscape Gardens the environmental impact of any work is considered and, where possible, habitats are enhanced in the process of maintaining this historically important and spectacular site. At the site on New Inn, constructed in 1717 to provide somewhere for visitors to rest and get refreshment, the National Trust plan to restore the derelict buildings and provide a new visitors centre. An important aspect of this work will be an extensive programme of habitat creation and protection of wildlife that currently thrives near the site of the development. New areas of hedgerows and scrub are planned to increase biodiversity and provide a protective barrier between visitors and delicate habitats. Additional habitat will be created in the form of habitat piles in order to encourage species such as invertebrates.
Take the A34 up to the M40 and then the motorway to junction 10, take the A43 towards Northampton, pass Brackley and then take the A422. Ignore the National Trust signs which would take you to the main entrance and instead take a left turn after a pub and then immediately right towards Chackmore. When the Corinthian arch can be seen on the left turn left and drive up to it. The New Inn Farm site is off on the right along a track.