(Frontispiece from Humphrey Repton’s Memoirs)

A treat for you all ( at least I hope it is accessible to all…..fingers crossed, but I am never quite sure of the vagaries of the workings /accessibility of the BBC iPlayer). Today on Radio 4 there was a delicious programme presented by Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen on Humphrey Repton and the English countryside.

With thoughtful comments by Stephen Daniels of Nottingham University ( author of THE most authoritative book on Repton) and Jenny Uglow, this is a great 15 minute programme giving an over view of Repton and his attitude towards the countryside and his clients. Here, below, is one of Repton’s illustrations showing the before and after views from his own cottage from his book Fragments on the Theory and Practise of Landscape Gardening(1816)

Jane Austen is referenced: mainly because she referenced Repton in Mansfield Park, having second hand experience of Repton and his ways after he was instructed by the Leighs at Adlestrop in Gloucestershire,

and at Stoneleigh, in Warwickshire,  below, which I visited again this summer.

Luckily, in my opinion, his excessive schemes for Stoneleigh were not all executed, see the scheme from the  Red Book Repton prepared for the Leighs, below-do note the Gilpinesque grouping of cattle in the foreground to the left of the watercolour….

…but we shall return soon to Repton, Stoneleigh Abbey and Adlestrop as I think its very interesting to see exactly how he altered both places.

In the meantime, here is the link to the programme and I do hope you enjoy it. You have 7 days left in which to listen again :)