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Ickworth unveils an illuminated winter wonderland

PUBLISHED: 10:31 19 November 2019 | UPDATED: 11:34 19 November 2019

Ickworth, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. The central Rotunda was designed by the Italian architect Mario Asprucci and now its Italian gardens and stumpery is going to be illuminated during the run-up to Christmas Photo:  NATIONAL TRUST

Ickworth, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. The central Rotunda was designed by the Italian architect Mario Asprucci and now its Italian gardens and stumpery is going to be illuminated during the run-up to Christmas Photo: NATIONAL TRUST

©National Trust Images/Robert Morris

National Trust Ickworth will be launching a brand-new sound and light-based experience this winter within the historic grounds of the Italianate Garden and Victorian Stumpery.

Dramatic stumpery in the gardens at Ickworth which are being illuminated during the run-up to Christmas Photo: Jim WoolfDramatic stumpery in the gardens at Ickworth which are being illuminated during the run-up to Christmas Photo: Jim Woolf

Starting on November 22 for 15 nights, Ickworth is inviting visitors to explore the gothic nature of its Victorian Stumpery as the gnarled roots are lit up and sounds of nature at night follow. Against the backdrop of the 18th century Rotunda, evergreen trees will also be lit to celebrate Ickworth's formal gardens in a completely new way.

Jack Lindfield, assistant head gardener said: "We are really looking forward to Ickworth's Light Nights, it's been something that we have wanted to do for a few years now and feel the Stumpery lends itself perfectly to this type of experience.

"The stumpery was created with trees that were uprooted during the Second World War, when fields were sown for 'Dig to Victory'. The Stumpery has a very secretive feel about it, hidden within the evergreen backdrop of the Italianate garden, this concealed gem boasts a significant amount of planting and structure.

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"Everyone who walks through the stumpery finds different elements that they like. For me it's the contrast between the gnarled and dark stumps against the delicate and verdant planting, working together to create a very natural yet moody feel. It also has plenty of nods to the grandeur Italianate garden with its evergreen foliage and its enclosed, grotto like pathways.

"We can't wait to see how it looks in the evening, transformed by light and sound."

Ickworth will also be serving artisan food and drinks from the West Wing Café and keeping the gift shop open until late to give visitors a chance to make the most of their evening out and start those festive celebrations.

Tickets are available with allocated entry time slots, but visitors are free to spend as long as they would like exploring the garden and Light Nights experience.

The Rotunda at Ickworth lit up at night for a special opening during the outdoor cinema event 'Stately Screening' sponsored by Sky and in association with BAFTA and Screen East Picture: NATIONAL TRUST *** Local Caption *** IckworthThe Rotunda at Ickworth lit up at night for a special opening during the outdoor cinema event 'Stately Screening' sponsored by Sky and in association with BAFTA and Screen East Picture: NATIONAL TRUST *** Local Caption *** Ickworth

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