Open 10:30 – 16:00
Home > Events > Autumn Lecture Series

Autumn Lecture Series

This October we will be hosting a series of lectures on the theme of ‘Collaborations’. These lectures will explore why landscape design is a field which is particularly fruitful for, and open to, interaction with other disciplines. Each week a leading garden designer will be in conversation with people who have shaped their practice, from architects to wine makers.

10th October – A Twenty-First Century Country House Revival

Garden Designer: Rupert Golby

The gardens at Nevill Holt in Leicestershire have a long and varied history, appearing on the Estate Map of 1661.  For much of the twentieth century, the heritage of the Hall and grounds lay dormant with the site’s use as a boys’ preparatory school.  Since 2005 garden designer Rupert Golby has undertaken gradual transformation of the gardens, with the Hall restored to its historic use as a family home.

Nevill Holt is now host to a flourishing and critically acclaimed opera festival.  During the summer months, opera goers enjoy an immersive experience in the gardens, interspersed with contemporary works of sculpture and architecture.  With Tom Smith of Gluckman Smith Architects and a second guest, Rupert will guide us through this transformative tale.


17th October – Inbetweenness and Intuition:
A Japanese Influence on Contemporary Gardens and Architecture

Garden Designer: Christopher Bradley-Hole

Collaboration has always been an essential part of Christopher Bradley-Hole’s approach to design.  He greatly welcomes interacting with architects, designers, artists and craftsmen.  In this talk Christopher explained how a very special collaboration with two people, one an architect, the other a writer, has created a unique and life-changing development in his work.  Always attracted by a sense of order, he has become more engaged with the indefinable in-between spaces and ambiguity in gardens.



24th October – Ribera del Duero: wine, gardening and biodynamics

Garden Designer: Tom Stuart-Smith

Peter Sisseck makes one of the most exclusive wines in the world. His most celebrated wine, Dominio de Pingus is produced in tiny quantities from old vines by biodynamic methods and sells for astonishing prices. The production is very labour intensive and there is more than one person employed in the vineyard for each barrel of wine made. In 2014 he built a farm, a cellar and visitor building to designs by Danish architect Henning Larsen and has been collaborating with Tom Stuart-Smith on the creation of a sustainable landscape around these buildings. The idea from the outset has been to make a garden which only uses a minimal amount of water to establish plants and creates a dynamic changing landscape where self-seeding herbs, shrubs and trees form a successional community and one that will be very different in ten years from how it is now. There have been successes and some quite conspicuous failures! They discuss the project and the cross over between winemaking and garden making with Tim Richardson, a practiced consumer of the products of both.

Buy Tickets


31st October – Collaborations

Garden Designers: Charlotte Harris and Hugo Bugg

Charlotte Harris and Hugo Bugg (Harris Bugg Studio) will discuss their newest collaboration – with each other – reflecting on the differences of working within their own separate practices and their decision to unite.  They will discuss other collaborative inspirations, both inside and outside the landscape design world, and influences on current projects.

Buy Tickets


Tickets: Standard £25, Garden Museum Friend £20

Become a Garden Museum Friend for just £30 a year


The Garden Café

The Garden Café will be open for drinks from 6.00pm and following each lecture can be booked for dinner.  There will be a special menu for each evening, more details to come soon.


Click on the speakers below to read their biographies

Nevill Holt, a collaboration: 10th October

  • Rupert Golby

    Rupert Golby

    Rupert began his career, after studying at Kew, as an apprentice with Rosemary Verey. He is well known for his skill with shrubs as well as perennial flowers, often employing a classical style planned and intended for long-term effect, rather than a one- or two-season dazzling border.
  • Thomas Smith

    Thomas Smith

    Thomas studied history at Oxford University, specialising in history of art and architecture, and proceeded to train at the Architectural Association. Before founding Gluckman Smith as partner in 2010 he worked for Rick Mather and Charles Tashima in London and Channa Daswatte in Sri Lanka. Extensive travel across both Europe and Asia has provided a recurring source of inspiration. Tom has particular professional experience working in rural and historic environments, coupled with broader interests in the arts, travel, landscape conservation, property management, commercial and renewable energy development. His projects include award winning residential work in Gloucestershire.

Japanese Gardens and Design: 17th October

  • Christopher Bradley-Hole

    Christopher Bradley-Hole

    Christopher trained as an architect and received a graduate degree from the Architectural Association in London in the study and conservation of historic gardens and landscapes. He can claim to be among the first of British minimalists to practise the art of minimal landscape design.

    Three of the Chelsea Flower Show gardens he created were sponsored by His Highness Sheik Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. All were gold medal winners, and his Hortus Conclusus of 2004 was the winner of ‘Best in Show.’
    Recent civic space projects are a new public landscape for the BBC at White City and a garden for the former Arsenal football ground recently converted to a residential scheme. He is the author of Making the Modern Garden (Mitchell Beazley) and The Minimalist Garden (Mitchell Beazley).
  • Robin Walker

    Robin Walker

    Robin Walker, Robin Walker Architects, is now based in Llublijana. He has worked with Christopher Bradley-Hole on the Highbury Stadium redevelopment project for Arsenal Football Club, and then on a special private house project in north London. This project has a strong Japanese theme but in a contemporary, abstract, way. Robin also produced a book about the project with Christopher based on photographs by Mr Futagawa who founded GA magazine in Japan.

  • Mark Griffiths

    Mark Griffiths

    Mark Griffiths is a horticulturist, botanist, historian and an award-winning writer on plants and gardens. After reading English at Magdalen College, Oxford, he pursued a career in his other lifelong interests, horticulture and botany, at the Oxford University Botanic Garden and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Aged 25, he was appointed Editor of the multi-volume New Royal Horticultural Society Dictionary of Gardening (1992). His other books include The RHS Index of Garden Plants (1994), Orchids: the Fine Art of Cultivation (2002), Endangered Plants of Japan: a Florilegium (2004), and The Lotus Quest (2009). He was Horticulture Correspondent of The Times, and is now a regular contributor to Country Life. His historical research focuses on the role of plants in society and culture - for example, medicinal botany, his work on which resulted in his designing and planting the garden of the Royal College of Physicians in Regent’s Park. For the past decade, he has been examining the impact of renaissance botany and horticulture on Elizabethan literature and, specifically, links between John Gerard and William Shakespeare – an investigation that sparked worldwide interest in 2015 when some of his findings were first announced. With his partner Yoko Otsuki, Griffiths has travelled and gardened in Japan, created Japanese gardens in the West, and introduced Japanese plants to British cultivation. Their particular interest is Nihon no dento engei, ‘traditional Japanese horticulture’, an ancient and astonishingly rich heritage of cultivated plants surprisingly many of which remain unknown outside Japan. These include the antique tree peonies that they sourced for Christopher Bradley-Hole’s 2005 Chelsea Flower Show garden In the Grove, one of a long series of inspiring interactions with the designer.

Ribera del Duero: wine, gardening and biodynamics: 24th October

  • Tom Stuart-Smith

    Tom Stuart-Smith

    Tom Stuart-Smith read Zoology at Cambridge before completing a postgraduate degree in Landscape Design at Manchester University. After working with Hal Moggridge and then with Elizabeth Banks he set up his own practice in 1998.
    Projects include a number of large private gardens in the English countryside, including Broughton Grange and Woodperry in Oxfordshire, Mount St John in Yorkshire, Fort Belvedere in Windsor Great Park and a new garden at Windsor Castle commissioned by the Royal Household to mark the Queen's Golden Jubilee. He was also responsible for the Landscape Masterplan at Trentham and the recasting of its Italian garden, the largest formal garden in England.
    More recent work includes the two hectare garden around the Bicentenary Glasshouse at Wisley for the RHS which was opened to the public by The Queen in June 2007. Tom has also designed a number of smaller inner city gardens including The Garden of Illusion at The Connaught and the Keeper’s House Garden at the Royal Academy of Arts. Tom continues to work on numerous overseas projects throughout Europe, India, USA and Caribbean.
    Tom has designed eight Gold Medal winning gardens at the Chelsea Flower Show and this includes three being awarded best in show. An exhibition on his work, the first about a living garden designer in the UK, was held at the Garden Museum in London in 2011.
    He writes occasionally for the Guardian, Financial Times and Telegraph, amongst others, and has lectured widely in the UK, Europe and USA.
  • Peter Sisseck

    Peter Sisseck

    Peter Sisseck was born in Denmark and has lived for the past 20 years in the Ribera del Duero, Spain where the winery Dominio de Pingus is located. His fascination for wine began at home with his parents and was later inspired, at the age of fourteen, by visiting his uncle, the renowned winemaker Peter Vinding, in Bordeaux. This moment ignited a life-long passion and directed his future path into the grapevines.

    He landed in Ribera del Duero in 1990 and took the post of technical director at the Hacienda Monasterio winery. Captivated with the contrasted and arid landscape, Peter developed a belief in the potential of the region for the creation of a high quality wine. What was supposed to be a short stay soon started to feel like home. His eager quest to find the perfect terroir of old exceptional vines was finally rewarded when he encountered the old vineyards of La Horra.

    The year 2006 brought the beginning of a new project. Seeing the shortage and disappearance of old vines in the Ribera del Duero (only 4000 vines left), Peter Sisseck put into motion the creation of his third wine, PSI. With the collaboration of wine growers and owners, this new modern wine is elaborated in harmony and respect for the biodynamic tradition of the vineyards with the input of modern technology in the winery. In 2010, Peter Sisseck ventured to France for a new challenge. Although it was a new beginning, it was also a return to his first French love, the Bordeaux region that he left 20 years ago. This newborn wine, named Chateau Rocheyron, is the fine result of the experience and care of its winemaker for traditionally grown vineyards and high quality innovation in the winery.

    Peter Sisseck lives on a farm in the Ribera del Duero.

Collaborations: 31st October

  • Charlotte Harris

    Charlotte Harris

    Charlotte has a degree in History from the University of Birmingham and it is this background of layers that drives her approach to design. She enjoys exploring patterns, processes, idiosyncrasies and influences that distinguish a place, and give it its singular character.

    Charlotte studied at Merrist Wood and subsequently trained under Tom Stuart-Smith before opening her own landscape design studio in 2013, working on high end residential, public spaces, show gardens and installations, as well as freelancing for other designers, which is how she met Hugo Bugg.

    She worked on a number of Main Avenue RHS Chelsea Gardens, before designing the gold medal-winning Royal Bank of Canada garden at the 2017 show.
  • Hugo Bugg

    Hugo Bugg

    Hugo was named Young Designer of the Year by the RHS in 2010 and since then become the youngest ever Gold medal winner at Chelsea Flower Show for his large show garden ‘The RBC Waterscape Garden, 2014’. Since graduating with a BA (Hons) in Garden Design, he has also won two other Gold medals at prestigious RHS flower shows including Hampton Court Palace Show in 2011 and Tatton Park in 2010 where he also won Best in Show.

    2016 saw Hugo return to Chelsea Flower Show with the highly acclaimed and publicised Royal Bank of Canada garden that was inspired by the Aleppo Pine forests of Jordan. This was the first time that a large show garden featured only native plants from the Levant area for which 80% had to be propagated from seed.

    As well as running the practice, Hugo gives guest lectures and seminars at leading garden design colleges and trade shows throughout the UK.
Image: Image courtesy of Nevill Holt Opera