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August 2018 - Member's draw for the Plant Symposium at Beth Chatto Gardens

Mat Hull, a designer working for the landscape architecture practice, Liz Lake Associates (an organisational member of EGT) won the ticket assigned to an EGT member working in any aspect of landscape or gardens.                                                      On winning, he said: "I am extremely delighted to discover that I am the prize winner of a professional's ticket to the Beth Chatto Ecological Plant Symposium. I am very excited to be attending both days of the event and look forward to hearing from inspirational professionals in my field.                                                                                                                                          "I am a Writtle University College trained landscape designer and enjoy working on both garden designs as well as larger landscape schemes. My passion is planting design. I relish trialling planting combinations full of texture and succession, and strive to develop this by learning as much as I can and continuing to practice. I also practice these techniques underwater by aquascaping as a hobby in my aquariums.                                                                                                                                  "With so many influential speakers, I hope to be further educated and look forward to being able to chat with some established designers to find out their current interests and discover how they got to where they are in their careers.             "So soon after the sad passing of Beth Chatto, from whom we learned so much, I will be spending time reflecting on and celebrating her life, achievements and legacy.'

The student member winner was Ellie Sims, who is studying for an MA in Landscape Architecture at Writtle University College. This is what she says about her decision to study at Writtle:  "It is one of the best decisions I could have made. My main interest is historic landscapes. I am spending the summer at Cobham. Hall, which is a landscape created by Humphry Repton over 25 years. It's a really inspiring place and I am currently planning to write my dissertation on it. I am also interested in ecology and biodiversity. After my MA I hope to be able to work in historic landscapes and gardens, but who knows what the future holds!" 

Watch this space for future member offers  - and Facebook 

August 2018 - £500 Travel Bursary for Academics

 Jill's cat helping with the preparation

Jill's cat helping with the preparation

We are delighted to announce that the 2018 bursary has been awarded to Jill Raggett, Emeritus Reader in Gardens and Designed Landscapes, Writtle University College, Essex, UK.

Jill is planning to visit New York and the High Line, a disused railway line which has been turned into an elevated, linear 2.33km public park. We look forward to hearing about her trip and about the High Line gardens. 

As the quality of entries was so high this year, the trustees agreed to make an award for 2019. This was won by Saruhan Mosler, who plans to travel to Merano and visit the gardens of Trauttmansdorff Castle (

These are her words on being awarded the bursary:  What fantastic news! I feel very honoured and happy to be selected for this award by EGT! Thank you and the EGT Board to create such  great opportunities and support academics to be able to explore and research by travelling other places! As you know institutions are not capable of supporting academics in research anymore! 

To find out how to apply for the 2020 bursary, join us and keep an eye on our website and Facebook. Here is a copy of our chairman's letter to pass on to any suitable applicants: 

Dear Garden or Landscape Academic

*£500* Travel Bursary *for Academics*

It gives me great pleasure to write to you on behalf of Essex Gardens Trust (EGT) to let you know about the launch of a new EGT travel bursary designed specifically for academics working in the field of gardens, landscape, and the planning and conservation of the same. The scheme is for academics who either live in Essex, or are affiliated to an Essex institution.

The award is for £500.00, and is to contribute to travel anywhere in the world, that enables the academic to visit gardens or landscapes that they have never visited before.  The sum can be put towards travel, accommodation, entrance fees etc; whatever best enables the trip to take place. 

In return, we ask that within 12 months of our making the award, the academic gives a 45 minute illustrated talk plus q&a about their trip, to EGT's members and guests, at an Essex-based venue of our choosing.  We hope this will enable you to enrich your teaching provision, further your research, and not least, inspire you about the critical discipline to which you are dedicated.

The DEADLINE for applications to this year's scheme is 30th June 2018 (It will be about this time in two years time for 2020).  If you would like to apply, the process is quick and simple!  Just contact us on our email ( providing the following:

- your name

- your discipline

- your institution name

- your Essex home address if your institution is outside of the county

- no more than 50 words describing the garden(s) or landscape(s) you would like to use the award to visit, and why

- your proposed period of travel (so we can plan ahead for your illustrated talk)

By way of appeal, if this is the kind of initiative that is of value to you, then we would love to have your support in enabling us to provide more opportunities of this kind.  In which case please do consider becoming an EGT member. You will find our application form here:

I look forward to receiving your application.

Kind regards

Thadian Pillai

Chair, Essex Gardens Trust

Caring about our green spaces.