The question that exercises my good friends from Devonshire, on the other hand, is ‘where the deer were at Ugbrooke?’ ‘Did they wander freely over all the extensive parkland, or were they contained in smaller paddocks?’
There will occur, in landscape, natural valleys, small advances in the slope, hardly enough to be named. At Burghley they carried springs and Capability Brown drained and smoothed them off when he made the lake, but in later works – Ugbrooke, Ashridge, Gatton, Benham above the lake – he offered to these adventitious declivities the same spare planting that he gave to the ‘valley direct’ at Claremont.
Miss S writes to tell me that being newly arrived in Berkhamstead she took herself to view the town’s great landmark, known as the Golden Valley, and she wonders now if that master of beech-hung beauty, Capability Brown, whom she knew by reputation, could have worked his wizardry there.
Spring brings out the cynic in men like Captain Ken – it is the sudden and unpredictable change in the look of things. Mr Honey on the other hand grows steadily less repressible. ‘Hark at the lark!’ he is wont to say, at every chirrup from a passing sparrow.
John Dalrymple: `The rapidity and noise of the rivers should be increased by artificial bulwarks and impediments .. and the falls of water should, by the interposition of rocks, or of new streams brought over them, be made to look more like cataracts than cascades…’
Mrs L. of Ilkley asks what tree would best summon up for the quintennial celebration that is to come in 2216 the quirkiness and quintessential quickness of Capability Brown. I don’t want to promote a competition, but I would put in a vote for the simple and much abused sycamore.