Parks & Gardens

Parks & Gardens: Blenheim Palace, Woodstock

Blenheim Palace, Woodstock

Blenheim Palace

Oxfordshire has a wonderful heritage of historic landscapes, parks and gardens.

These range in age from medieval to modern and in scale from private gardens to the landscaped grounds of great estates through to manorial, college and domestic gardens.

The international importance of Blenheim Palace and its park was recognised through inscription as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986. Oxfordshire has several other landscapes of national importance including Shotover, Nuneham Courtenay, Rousham, some of the college gardens of Oxford University and the Oxford Botanic Garden.

Fifty-six of the most outstanding sites are included in English Heritage’s Register of Historic Parks and Gardens. These are listed under each of the five Oxfordshire districts (see map, above left). 

Besides the registered sites there are many more which are of local historical importance or whose history is not yet documented. A review of historic parks and gardens in the county was carried out by Colvin and Moggeridge in 1997. Their report identified 185 sites of special interest, either nationally or at county level. The Trust promotes the enjoyment and understanding of all these landscapes through its programme of visits, lectures and research activities.