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Gloucestershire Business News

Friends offered private view of historic gardens

Where: Foxley Manor, near Malmesbury

When: Sunday, June 2

Friends of The Nelson Trust, based in Stroud, will have an exclusive opportunity to tour the garden of Foxley Manor, near Malmesbury, on Sunday, June 2.

At the kind invitation of Richard and Lou Turnor, The Nelson Trust fundraising committee has organised a private view of an exquisite collection of sculpture and paintings in the house and gardens of Foxley Manor, finishing with champagne and canapes in the marquee.

A doomsday manor, Foxley was owned by the Fox family (Charles James Fox the Whig MP) from 1727 until 1902, when it was bought by Richard Turnor's great grandfather. Mr and Mrs Turnor moved into the house in 2006.

Over the past 12 years, the Turnors have planted many trees and shrubs, made the pool, completed the layout in the kitchen garden, as well as adding a greenhouse and arboretum.

Mrs Turnor said: "I love unusual, interesting plants, scent is a priority. Three generations of women have gardened here, especially my mother-in-law Joyce. Having said that, my husband is semi-retired and has thrown himself into the growing of veg with alacrity."

Mrs Turnor, who is a sculptor herself, has selected the artwork for the showing. She said: "I have included a young painter who lives locally, Ali Boggis-Rolfe, who I believe will be very successful.

"The other artist, Peter Lloyd-Jones, also lives nearby. His work is whimsical and very subtle. He has shown his work with John Martin in London."

Mrs Turnor, known professionally as Louisa Forbes, will also have pieces on display along with two other sculptors. Olivia Musgrave, chair of the Society of Portrait Sculptors and well established with regular shows in London and Ireland. Her work is figurative and reflects both her Greek and Irish background; there is a gentle humour about her Amazons.

Geoff Jeal is a master of metalwork, his pieces are abstracted from the natural world and his attention to detail and love of the job are reflected in his work, which with its clear form is a gift for a garden designer.

Local artist Victoria Rees will also be displaying and selling her beautiful silk scarves.

Mr and Mrs Turnor have three children and four dogs. Already active in local charities, Mrs Turnor has taken a step back recently to devote more time to sculpture and the garden.

"It feels right to share the garden, to make money for local charities and to give pleasure to people," she said.

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