Photography by Jason Ingram

Leonardslee launches autumn and winter season displays

Leonardslee Lakes and Gardens in Horsham, West Sussex, is launching its autumn and winter programme. There will be events for visitors to enjoy the seasonal displays in the gardens. This includes Leonardslee Illuminated, from Fri 24 Nov – Thurs 21 Dec. This is a highly popular nighttime trail featuring spellbinding illuminations, large-scale projections and music. Plus, visitors can expect food and gift stalls. 

Throughout this period the gardens become a major attraction for visitors. Hundreds of tree varieties showcase stunning bark and colours. The oak and acer walk is a must-visit. It offers views of grand oaks and acers, as well as the bluebell wood and shimmering reflections of amelanchiers and swamp cypress in the seven lakes.  

The famous Rock Garden, created in 1890, turns into a sea of greens, blues, and yellows during the winter months. Lichens and moss create fascinating shapes on the Pulhamite rocks. 

Visitors can also enjoy the sight of winter-hardy Bennett Wallabies, descendants of the original herd brought by Sir Edmund Loder in 1889. The deer park becomes a particularly stunning spot when frost descends, providing an ideal setting for photographers.  

Migrating birds find shelter and feed on the berries at Leonardslee in the autumn and winter months. It offers an opportunity to see various bird species amongst the bare trees and around the lakes. Ducks, cormorants, snipes, and woodcocks can be spotted, while birds of prey circle overhead. 

The historic Leonardslee estate, established by Sir Edmund Loder, spans 240 acres. It is often referred to as “the finest woodland gardens in England.” The estate features a café and Michelin-starred Restaurant Interlude, with luxury rooms for overnight accommodation and classic afternoon tea in Leonardslee House.

BN1 chats with Leonardslee’s Sculpture Park Curator on the garden’s art

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