Woburn Abbey dates back to 1145. It started life as a religious house for a group of Cistercian monks until the 1500s when it was confiscated because Henry VIII found the Abbot guilty of treason. Soon after the Abbey was handed over to Sir John Russell. It stayed in the Russell family and the Dukedom of Bedford was created. Today Woburn Abbey and Gardens are home to the Fifteenth Duke of Bedford, his wife and family.
Luckily for us, the Abbey and Gardens are beautifully maintained and open for the public to enjoy.
I have enjoyed visiting these gardens many times both as a child with my parents and in my adult years. It is such a joyful place. Below are some photos from my most recent visit in May.
In 1804 Humphry Repton was commissioned to design a makeover to enhance the garden. Many of the features remain today.
Repton’s work can be found across the UK including in Russell Square, London where the Russell family owned the area of Bloomsbury.
There is an exhibition at Woburn Abbey from March to October 2018 to celebrate the bicentenery of Humphry Repton’s work
I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse of the gardens.
There are other major attractions at Woburn including the Abbey, the deer park and the Safari Park. They are easily reached from London. You can hop on a train from St Pancras International to Flitwick which is a 20 minute taxi journey away from Woburn.
Find out more at the Woburn Abbey and Gardens website.