Experts

Our Experts include:

Susan Campbell – The co-founder, in 2001, of the Walled Kitchen Garden Network with the late Fiona Grant, Susan began researching the history of walled kitchen gardens in 1981. She has personally visited and photographed over 600 walled kitchen gardens in the UK and abroad, making her a foremost authority on the subject (see Publications ). She lectures and advises professionally.

John Clark – A former Chartered Town Planner, he was the Garden History Society’s Conservation Officer for the South West Region for over 9 years and is the Conservation Officer for the Devon Gardens Trust.  He has considerable knowledge of  designed landscapes and offers specialist advice on historic parks and garden and their setting. Over the years, John has advised local planning authorities on a number of planning applications about development proposals  affecting walled kitchen gardens. The advice is generally that walled kitchen gardens should not be regarded as suitable sites for new houses but, in the few occasions where development is appropriate,  the design should reflect the traditional buildings found in walled gardens.

Chris & Karen Cronin – They are the owners of the now flourishing Walled Kitchen Gardens at Croome Court in Worcestershire. They bought the then derelict kitchen gardens in June 2000 when the Estate was under the mixed ownership of property developers and the National Trust. Since then many of the Hot Houses have been restored, along with the perimeter walls, back sheds, forcing beds and more. The restoration project is still in progress. Current objectives include a future restored Tomato House and further extensions to the ‘sustainable’ vegetable planting. In addition they are working on restoring the old ‘Orchid House’ which will be a significant feature once it takes its place again within the landscape of the Kitchen Gardens.

Christopher Gallagher – With more than thirty years’ experience, Christopher Gallagher has advised on the survey, analysis, conservation and management of a wide range of parks & gardens properties throughout Great Britain and Ireland. Clients have included private individuals and Trusts, Local Authorities, The National Trust, English Heritage, Cadw, Duchas (Eire), Historic Scotland and the Heritage Lottery Fund. In the period between 2002-12, he was Gardens & Parks Curator with the National Trust, advising on an extensive and varied portfolio of sites throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland. He has since returned to private practice.

David Hargreaves – David’s expertise is in the research and conservation of historic garden buildings especially those in walled kitchen gardens. He runs an annual workshop based in a kitchen garden for the Network to assist those involved in their conservation and maintenance.

Mike Kleyn – Mike’s focus is kitchen gardens for chefs/hotels. He was involved in the design of the 4th floor kitchen garden at the Ham House Hotel, Piccadilly, London and also established the walled garden at The Pig in Brockenhurst. He was the head gardener at Babington House, Somerset where he grew fresh produce in the walled garden there for the restaurant. Before that he was for two years the gardener for the River Café, Hammersmith while also working as a volunteer guide and label engraver at the Chelsea Physic Garden.

Lorna McRobie – Landscape Architect. Retired 2010. Previously worked in local government;  as Director of Gardens & Landscape at  English Heritage; and latterly as Policy Adviser- Parks and Landscape at  Heritage Lottery Fund. 25 yrs experience in working with county gardens trusts and other voluntary groups, she can offer advice on project development, project management and Lottery funding.

Jeremy Milln FSA – A consultant in archaeological conservation with more than 30 years professional experience working in cultural heritage, 23 of them with the National Trust in a curatorial and consultancy role for archaeology and vernacular buildings. Historic building survey and analysis, conservation management, parkland restoration, oral history and the management of volunteers were part of the job. With his interest in the history of glasshouses Jeremy has advised on the conservation of numerous examples including those at Attingham, Bettisfield, Blithfield, Dunham, Ingestre, Penpont, Spetchley and Whitehurst. His concern for the care and conservation of old glasshouses and walled gardens is born of an understanding and practical application of the results of archaeological and historical research. He is at home in a walled garden where the analytical skills of an archaeologist, an architectural historian’s understanding for building style, and a conservation architect’s for traditional materials and building and repair techniques may fruitfully interact.

 Tom Petherick – After taking a Dip. Hort. in Commercial Horticulture Tom Petherick spent a combined total of 6 years at The Lost of Gardens of Heligan. He wrote two books about the gardens and presented a DVD on its history, restoration and cultivation. In between times he restored walled gardens at St Giles House and Long Crichel in Dorset where he grew and sold organic produce. He has consulted on many walled gardens including Trengwainton for the National Trust. He farms organically and biodynamically in Devon and is a partner in the landscape consultancy Petherick, Urquhart and Hunt.

Mike Thurlow.  Mike is an experienced Head Gardener with over 30 years of practical gardening experience behind him. He managed the restoration of the Victorian Walled Kitchen Garden at Audley End in Essex, growing heirloom cultivars of fruit, flowers and vegetables organically. He now offers his services as a freelance speaker, garden designer and consultant. He acts as advisor to the National Allotments Society, regularly writes articles on various gardening aspects for magazines and is the author of ‘Teach Yourself – Grow Your Own Fruit and Vegetables’.