Catherine Taylor, Head Archivist at Waddesdon, uses archive documents and images to tell the story of Ferdinand’s creation of the gardens at Waddesdon.
In 1874 Ferdinand de Rothschild bought nearly 3000 acres of farmland at Waddesdon there was no ‘big house’, no gardens, and no parkland. Six years later he welcomed his first guests and in just over a decade had created the masterpiece that is the house and gardens we can see today.
Waddesdon Manor was created as a place to entertain and the gardens, aviary, stables and pleasure grounds were very much part of the experience. The scale and cost were immense and the results created one of the very best gardens of its time.