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Ushaw was founded in 1808 and is the successor college to the English College in Douai. When Ushaw first opened, apart from the beech trees planted for shelter in the early 1800's (which still stand today), the building was surrounded by open fields. The formal gardens were designed and laid out in 1852 and the lake, known to students as 'the pond', was then formalised in the landscape.
After the college closed in 2011, and despite best efforts, the garden became overgrown. Since the autumn of 2014, however, a group of volunteer gardeners have been hard at work to restore the garden and grounds. We are happy to say that their hard work has left us with a garden that rivals the one of old here at Ushaw, whilst still respecting the roots that has led it to today.
Now visitors are free to explore the beautiful gardens for themselves, with paths winding through the ancient trees and beautiful flower beds that have characterised Ushaw's gardens for more than a century. We now also have some modern additions to the garden, in the form of gorgeous wood carvings, courtesy of the acclaimed carver Tommy Craggs.
As with our buildings, the Ushaw Gardens are open to the public. Access to the gardens is permitted every day from 9am until dusk, brilliant for the summer time. Admission for individuals is free, though donations are welcomed to help us keep the beauty of nature on our doorstep.