Favorite English Countryside Styles
The English countryside is often viewed as one of the more picturesque locations in the world. Beautiful hillsides seem to be punctuated by aging rustic estates that were once held by the nobility or small, quaint cottages set off the beaten path to get away from the world. There is a certain aged elegance to the entire thing that tends to capture the hearts of those viewing it. As a result, most of us have an idea of our favorite things in an English countryside whether we’ve been to England or not. Hollywood has helped matters a great deal by being endlessly happy to utilize such estates in films over the years. This is only further by the continual interest in the lifestyle of the nobility in the past and the great beauties that they commissioned to help their estates stand out. Let’s take a quick look at some of the hallmarks of the English countryside so that we have a better appreciation for their place in the country’s history and unique flair.
The archetype for the English countryside is a sprawling estate. These were built to varying sizes depending on the status of the family that it was for with truly large homes going to the highest echelons of the nobility and slightly smaller ones going to lesser gentry. Blenheim Palace is an example of one of the many notable homes dotting the English countryside, but Hardwick Hall is another good example as well. These homes made use of the local area to put on a grand display of the power of their residents with sweeping architecture that captures the imagination to today. Each of these estates typically has some form of gardens along with other accommodations to help them stand out. Some of them even commissioned people to entirely reshape the surrounding land to their tastes. To that end, the country estates of the English countryside remain picturesque to today.
Country cottages are perhaps a subtle reminder that the simple life has always been with us. These days there aren’t many original cottages left standing, but the smaller communities around English often have reconstructions of some of these. Additionally, many of the country estates also have such homes on their grounds that were originally for members of the staff. These smaller dwellings are fairly modest by comparison to estates, but take ample advantage of the landscape around them. Most of the time they’re associated with groundskeepers and the like in movies, but some of the ones that exist today are occupied by people unconnected to the grounds the homes are found on. They simply opt to live in such dwellings for the sense of history and natural beauty. They, like the larger homes, often also have their own style of garden compared to the more formalized ones of the larger homes.
The exercise in quaint chaos is what makes an English cottage garden so beautiful. They take up a great deal of space in photos specifically because they catch people’s eyes. They seem to grow wild beside houses and to be left to creep up the side of homes with abandon. In truth, this is a deliberate style. English cottage gardens blend aesthetics and practicality. There are often edible vegetables growing lower in the beds with cultivated flowers and vines growing among them that offer the aesthetics people look for in a garden. This combination of function and form is ultimately what makes the gardens particularly immortal despite the varying styles of the larger country estate gardens. No English cottage garden is quite the same beyond their willingness to embrace the beauty of nature.
The beauty of the English countryside will continue to capture people’s imaginations whether through its traditional estates or other sources of beauty. Many people speak of the natural beauty of The Lake Country where some of the most naturally beautiful spots in England can be found. Roaming the English countryside is sure to provide you with a window into another place that even Hollywood can’t take you with their period dramas. Enjoy the beauty on your own terms instead of someone else’s.