The Lost Gardens of Heligan


The story of how the gardens of Heligan in Cornwall became ‘lost’ is a sad one. During the First World War, many of the people who worked on the estate left to fight. The gardens were neglected and eventually became overgrown.

A large restoration project began in the 1990s when one of the doors to a walled garden was discovered by accident. Written on one of the walls was a list of the names of men who had worked the land before going off to war. Many of them had not returned.

Now a popular attraction, Heligan has 200 acres of ancient woodland, flower gardens and farmland. What sets it apart from other English gardens though is the Jungle. Walking through this section of the garden feels like you have been transported to another part of the world. Full of outstanding trees and exotic plants, the Jungle is also home to one of the longest Burmese Rope Bridges in Britain.


estate, noun [C], a large area of land in the country, usually with one large house on it and one owner
neglect, verb, to fail to look after someone or something properly
overgrown, adjective, covered with plants that have grown in an uncontrolled way
restoration, noun [U], when you repair something such as an old building, so that it looks the same as when it was first built
acre, noun [C], a unit for measuring area
woodland, noun [C], an area of land covered with trees
exotic, adjective, unusual and interesting because it is related to a foreign country
rope, noun, [C] very strong thick string, made by twisting together many thinner strings


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