RHS Chatsworth, Derbyshire

Sculptural installation over the River Derwent

Best in Show and People’s Choice at Chatsworth House in Derbyshire’s Peak District.

The Brewin Dolphin Garden, in the new FreeForm category, was an installation celebrating the landscape of the 1,000-acre parkland and the elegance and beauty of Chatsworth House.
Embracing the majestic setting of Chatsworth House, the garden made the most of the beautiful views and natural curves of the landscape and provided a spectacular contemporary viewpoint from which to enjoy ‘Capability’ Brown’s historic vistas.

Sited on the banks of the River Derwent, the scale of the garden reflected the grandeur of its setting, combining contemporary industrial materials with naturalistic planting. Central to the design was an imposing contemporary sculpture crafted from reinforcing steel bars which swept through the space, taking in the shape of the river before cantilevering dramatically out over the water. Here, it hung suspended in mid air before sweeping back to the riverbank and spiralling into a circular enclosed building.

This garden won Best in Show and People’s Choice.

A series of garden areas dotted along the sculpture’s main frame were connected by wildflower turf following the organic shape of the structure. At one end, majestic field maples and hornbeams created a glade of trees surrounded by meadow. At the other, an ornamental garden curved around the imposing steel building. A soft pastel planting palette of blues and pinks with highlights of apricot contrasted with the patina of the steel sculpture

Photography by Ben J Davies.