The Garden, House and Grounds
The Moores' home and an artist's workplace. Open until 28 October 2012.
View from the rear of Hoglands, the Moores' home
The colourful borders lead to other more informal areas of planting, designed to show the artist's outdoor work to best advantage.
Perry Green, near Bishop's Stortford in Hertfordshire, was home for over 40 years to sculptor Henry Moore, his wife Irina and later their daughter Mary. Over this time, Irina Moore transformed an area behind their house, Hoglands, into a beautiful border garden, dividing it with paths and introducing structural levels. An apple orchard and kitchen garden were also created.
From the late 1950s, Henry Moore acquired more land, extending the boundaries of his estate beyond Hoglands to create further studios and grounds for displaying sculpture. Irina worked closely with him to adapt these areas, including one that had been used by a market-gardener to keep ponies and pigs. Together they remodelled this land, Irina introducing specially-sited shrubs and trees to frame the outdoor sculptures he made and positioned there.
In 2007 Hoglands was renovated and opened to the public, and the gardens were re-instated by garden designer Yvonne Innes, based on historical photographs from the Foundation's archive, as well as advice and support from Mary Moore. The resulting scheme reflects Irina's original style, and flowers from late spring to early autumn. Inside the house, visitors can see the original furniture, artworks and personal belongings seen much as they were during the Moores' lifetime. The Moore Family kindly loans many of these objects, and the interior has been described by Mary as 'almost exactly as it was when my parents lived in it.'
The house and gardens are part of a visit that includes displays of Moore's outdoor sculpture, his former studios, an exhibition gallery, and a medieval Aisled Barn with tapestries. The 70-acre estate is also the headquarters of The Henry Moore Foundation, an award-winning charity established by Moore in 1977. It is open to visitors from 3 April - 28 October 2012.
Today there is nowhere better worldwide to appreciate the artist's work. Visitors can enjoy an unforgettable rural landscape, fringed with colourful herbaceous schemes; tree walks, an orchard, and evergreen and structural planting year-round. The more intimate greenhouses where Irina grew many varieties of cacti and orchids are also open to the public.
A small team of gardeners work year round to maintain the grounds in top condition, and conservators do the same for Moore's sculpture. Visitors are welcome to come and enjoy these, as well as the artist's studios, Aisled Barn with its tapestries, and gallery with exhibitions. You can also book to see inside Hoglands, the Moores' house. Otherwise no booking required for groups of less than eight. Please see right for details of times and prices.
Open Tuesday to Sunday, and Bank Holiday Mondays.
** Please note that BBC Country Tracks' programme featuring us on 8 January shows the wrong location. Perry Green is situated to the east of Ware, near Bishop's Stortford. There is another, unrelated Perry Green in West Hertfordshire.