`

Gardener's dream job up for grabs at Pride and Prejudice's ‘Pemberley’

Lyme Park in Disley is recruiting a new head gardener. Photo: National Trust Images.
Lyme Park in Disley is recruiting a new head gardener. Photo: National Trust Images.

A once in a lifetime opportunity has arisen to take charge of one of the National Trust’s most popular gardens.

Lyme Park in Disley is recruiting a new head gardener.

Fans of the BBC’s adaptation of Jane Austen’s classic Pride and Prejudice will recognise the beautiful gardens at Lyme from the well-known Colin Firth lake scene which portrayed the meeting of Mr Darcy and Miss Elizabeth Bennet at Pemberley.

Gary Rainford retired as Lyme's head gardener last month, having worked for over 47 years for the National Trust including. He spent 23 years caring for the gardens at Speke Hall in Liverpool before taking charge of Lyme’s gardens in 1994.

During his time in the role, Gary oversaw many conservation and restoration projects in the garden at Lyme, including the major replanting and rebuilding of the Rose garden, restoring the rare and historic Wyatt garden as well as managing the gardens during major filming projects including Pride and Prejudice, The Village and feature film The Awakening.

A spokesperson for the National Trust said: "As the Cheshire property embarks on an ambitious project to dramatically change the infrastructure and re-interpret the histrionic landscapes, this is a great opportunity for someone to lead the next chapter of Lyme's rich garden history.

Retiring head gardener of 24 years, Gary Rainford.

Retiring head gardener of 24 years, Gary Rainford.

"Lyme is a garden of contrasts; nestled on the edge of the Peak District it is carved out of the moorland and woodland it is surrounded by. The challenge of it being the second highest garden in the National Trust adds to its uniqueness."

The garden was much loved by the Legh family who lived at Lyme for nearly 600 years, and who played a pivotal role in creating the space we see today.

The advert for the head gardener position closes on May 13. Applicants can apply through the National Trust Jobs website at www.ntjobs.org.uk and search for job reference ‘IRC64077’.

The view of the house from the Italian Garden. Photo: National Trust Images.

The view of the house from the Italian Garden. Photo: National Trust Images.