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Parallel Lives: Exploring the Garden Designs of John Codrington and Humphrey Waterfield

For this talk writer Jean Cornell shares the story of two painter-gardeners of the 1930s: Humphrey Waterfield and John Codrington.

Waterfield was an artist and garden designer, who most famous creation is Le Clos du Peyronnet at Menton, one of the most admired gardens of the French Riviera. Its charm continued through his nephews: William Waterfield, the botanist and gardener – whose work at Le Clos Jean Cornell wrote about – and Giles, who made Le Clos the subject of his novel The Long Afternoon. This lecture celebrates William’s gift to the Museum, as a legacy, of one of his uncle’s paintings of the terraces stepping down to the sea.

Cornell’s second subject is John Codrington, a career soldier for whom painting was a lifelong hobby, and who began to design gardens when he was 60. Based in Rutland, Codrington presented his designs as a modern take on Humphry Repton’s ‘Red Books’.

Waterfield and Codrington are two favourites Jean has chosen from her PhD on 20th-century artist gardeners

Read Jean’s obituary of William Waterfield: The Plantsman who Created a Legendary English Garden in the French Riviera