The Original Garden Gnome

 

Lamport became the ‘home of the gnome’ under its Victorian Baronet, Sir Charles Isham. Sir Charles was an interesting man, some might say eccentric. He was a fervent spiritualist and, most unusually for the times, a vegetarian. He loved the outdoors, and his great passion was gardening.

He began work on one of the first rockeries in England in 1847. Some 24 foot high, 90 foot long and 47 foot wide, it was built right up against the Hall so that Sir Charles could see it from his bedroom window. It was made to look like a miniature world, with tiny crevices and caves, and planted dwarf trees. The rockery was populated with gnomes around 1874 and they remained there happily until the death of Sir Charles when, according to legend, they were shot at with air rifles by his daughters! However although they were lost, one managed to survive and he can be seen on display in the hall.