Country Walking Magazine (UK) - - Discover -

Stour­head cov­ers some 2650 acres of rolling Wilt­shire hill­sides. Orig­i­nally owned by the Stour­ton fam­ily, the house and gardens we see to­day are the work of the Hoare fam­ily, who bought the es­tate in 1717. The house was re­mod­elled as a Pal­la­dian man­sion, while the gardens chan­nelled the river Stour (which rises on the es­tate at Six Wells Bot­tom) into a se­ries of ar­ti­fi­cial ponds and lakes which feed the veg­e­ta­tion and pro­vide struc­ture to the views. The Hoares owned and de­vel­oped Stour­head un­til 1946, when Sir Henry Hoare gave the es­tate to the Na­tional Trust, as his only son and heir, Harry, had been killed in the First World War. A ‘com­ing of age tree’ planted for Harry now bears one of the ce­ramic pop­pies from the 2014 com­mem­o­ra­tive in­stal­la­tion at the Tower of Lon­don.

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