From past to present

815

First mention of Bedgebury in an Anglo-Saxon charter. 

1400s

The name Bedgebury derives from the earliest listed resident of the area, John de Bedgebury.

1425

The estate comes under Culpeper ownership.

1660

Following the English Civil War, Bedgebury is sold to Sir Thomas Hayes.

1680

Sir James Hayes builds an imposing new manor house at Bedgebury, which still exists today in private ownership.

1836

Marshals Lake 2018The estate passes to Field-Marshal Viscount Beresford and his wife Lady Louisa. The family starts planting newly discovered and recently introduced tree species; many of these can still be seen on site today. Louisa Lake in the forest and Marshal's Lake (pictured) in the Pinetum are named after this important couple. 

1850

William Beresford creates the hamlets of Kilndown and Bedgebury to house his estate staff.

1883

Lady Mildreds carriage drive 2Alexander Beresford-Hope, son of Louisa from her first marriage, takes over the estate. The avenue of Lawson cypress in the Pinetum is named after Alexander's wife, Lady Mildred.

1899 

The estate is sold to Isaac Lewis, a City financier, who lets it fall to ruin.

1919 

The Crown Estate purchases the Bedgebury Estate for the newly formed Forestry Commission.

1925

The Forestry Commission, in partnership with the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew, starts to plan the relocation of Kew's conifer collection to Bedgebury, spearheaded by renowned conifer expert and Assistant Curator at Kew, William Dallimore. Read more about Dallimore's legacy in our magazine: Issue 10 here.

1929 

Eucalyptus TrialsAn area to the east of the Pinetum known as 'The Plots' is planted as a research area for species trials. You can walk here as part of the Hidden Secrets of the Pinetum trail.

1959

Dallimore youngWilliam Dallimore, whose efforts brought about the creation of The National Pinetum at Bedgebury, dies. 'Dallimore Valley' is named after him.

1965 

The Forestry Commission and Kew end their collaborative work at Bedgebury as Kew's efforts move to Wakehurst Place. 

1987 

37999 October 1987 The Great StormThe Great Storm: Bedgebury loses a third of its tree collection. Although catastrophic, it provides the Forestry Commission with the opportunity to redesign the landscape and establish a different planting regime. Formerly taxonomically organised, trees now start to be grouped more aesthetically. This strategy also reduces the risk of mass destruction either by storm or disease. 

From 2006 to present

11221447 415416305310640 6277217627862966674 oBedgebury works with global partners to help conserve endangered tree species and the team achieves some significant 'firsts' in tree conservation. Bedgebury  participates in seed-collecting trips to places such as USA, Japan, China, Vietnam and Australasia to help save the rarest conifer species on the planet.