“The Ridges”, built in the late 1700' s by local landowners the Standish-Langtree family, has had only a handful of owners since then.
In1880 the house and land was bought by John Haslem Gillett, a wealthy cotton mill owner with many mills around Lancashire. The surrounding six acres of land was developed into a walled kitchen garden planted with fruit trees, and the rest was developed into landscaped gardens, lawns, glades,including many different species of rhododendrons, and woodlands. These surrounded the gardens on three sides making them very sheltered.
The house and gardens remained in the Gillett family until the late 1940's Since then it has belonged to the family of the present owners and in 1994 plans went ahead to restore parts of the garden. The old walled orchard with trees still bearing fruit today, has been planted with wide perennial borders, a herb garden, and a natural looking stream. Spectacular, highly scented rambling roses, and clematis, scramble through the apple trees.
A living arch leads from the orchard through a sturdy metal gate into the more formal area, where a large, rectangular lawn has now been surrounded with shrub beds, and brightly foliaged trees to contrast with the older hollies, copper beech and rhododendrons. The centre of this lawn now has a bed filled with grasses and moisture loving plants, in the middle of which, is a large stone urn. In one corner of the lawn is a Victorian style glass house.
Passing on, you come to the glades and woodlands where the undergrowth is being cleared to make way for winding paths and replanted with specimen trees, ferns and shade loving plants.
Each year, new features are created or areas that have been neglected, are restored to provide new interest for visitors.