Treading a Victorian Pathway


The Heritage Festival returns to the Bailiwick of Guernsey highlighting a range of island history from evolution to revolution with the theme: Guernsey Encounters - Throughout the Ages.

The Victorian era ran from 1837-1901 when Queen Victoria ascended the throne and was a time of great invention and change with a marked contrast between life for the wealthy and the poor. Saumarez Park and the land down to Cobo was owned by the de Saumarez family. The Victorian Kitchen Garden was thought to have been created around 1830 to grow fruit, vegetables, herbs and flowers for the large household of the family who lived in the main house, which is now St Johns Residential Home.

In the walled gardens we are creating an event to invite locals and visitors to discover some of the unusual facts about Victorians with an emphasis on gardening and a few other interesting topics.

Volunteers have been researching quirky facts and will highlight these along the paths: Unearth the secrets of Victorian Gardening, Foibles of life for the gardeners, Curious tools from the era, Beneficial and harmful plants, Culinary and pharmaceutical uses of herbs, Unusual manures and Fertilisers and Creepy Garden pests.

Queen Victoria had a very sweet tooth, a love of food and ate enormous amounts, hence her 50 inch waist. Discover the origins of the Victoria sandwich which started as a tea time treat for children in the Nursery and became her favourite cake; the use of an Icehouse which became the precursor to refrigeration and ice-cream, Street Food which was enjoyed by the common people who had no access to cooking facilities including penny dreadfuls and jellied eels, the origin of the Boneshaker and Alternative use for newspapers which is preferable to filling a white/black waste bag as in 2019.

Modern Day street food will be available with bacon sandwiches, pancakes by The Guernsey Beekeepers and Icecream from Le Hechet Farm – weather permitting. Entertainment will be provided by James Dumbleton who will serenade with his mandolin and English and French bagpipes and U3A choir with Music Hall songs. Retail therapy will be available from stalls: Hand-made Crafts at the relocated La Choppe, Plants, Wallow Farm Charcuterie and produce from Parish apiaries.

All main activities under cover, come and visit rain or shine.

Victorian dress optional

Sunday 28 April at 11.00am – 4.00pm

Car Parking at Home Farm, weather permitting

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