The Wedgwood Garden, RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019

Jo Thompson’s garden for Wedgwood; a breathtaking blend of industrialism and romanticism.

Etruria, built in 1769, was the pioneering Staffordshire village that Josiah Wedgwood built for his workers ten years after the founding of The Wedgwood business, which was known as ‘the factory on the garden’ as it has plentiful green space alongside a canal.

Water was fundamental to the functionality of Wedgwood’s production and transformation to an international industry. The Wedgwood Garden references this with a watercourse that flows through multiple levels, unifying and delineating differing areas, with a trickling stream connecting key elements and echoing the canals and watercourses of Staffordshire.

Jo was inspired by classical architecture whilst living in Rome. Standing proudly above the garden and beautifully framing the space, are interlinked arched pavilions that echo the foundations of the past while delivering a fresh new approach. The pavilions related ever-changing framed views providing different perspectives of the creative landscape.

The variety of angles is brought together by repeated use of materials in the garden, with subtly contrasting surfaces and textures. They are used alongside delicate decorative metalwork and artfully placed sculptures highlighting key junctions and motifs.


A dynamic, natural and untamed scheme, with mass plantings that are both textural and structural. The planting palette features soft lemons, creams and peach with accents of fresh green, zingy lime and rich, deep claret.

Photography by Clive Nichols. Videos by James Bloomfield Videography.