Formal garden

On the edge of a secluded valley, deep in the Dorset countryside, is Mapperton House, a Jacobean manor house, and home to the Earl and Countess of Sandwich.

The house itself is only open for a few weeks during the summer, but the gardens are open from the beginning of March to the end of October and were the reason for our visit.

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The half-timbered lych-gate at St Mary’s church, Painswick in Gloucestershire, looking pretty with the crocuses blooming in the sunshine today. The churchyard is world-famous for its 99 clipped yew trees.

The Lychgate at St Mary's Church, Painswick, Gloucestershire

Painswick is sometimes referred to at ‘The Queen of the Cotswolds’  and is a photographer’s paradise.

The BBC drama, The Casual Vacancy based on a story by JK Rowling, is partly set in the village of Painswick.