Church of St Peter and St Paul at Fenstanton seeks funding for restoration of Capability Brown Memorial

A fundraising campaign to restore the only memorial to Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown and his family in the UK has reached its half way mark, following a successful Festival in 2016 marking the 300th anniversary of his birth.

The organisation responsible for it is looking to raise £40,000 to ensure this towering historical figure is properly recognised as no other significant memorial exists in the UK except the one at the Church of St Peter and St Paul in Fenstanton, Cambridgeshire - the only place he is known to have purchased land, and where he and his family are buried.

The Church of St Peter and St Paul was recently Grade I listed by Historic England and as well as the many historical and architectural reasons given for the listing, the fact that the Church contains a memorial to such a significant historical figure was also highlighted as integral to the decision.

Throughout 2016 the Capability Brown Festival successfully celebrated the life of this extraordinary man whose style helped shaped people’s picture of the quintessential English countryside. Royal Gardener and grandfather of the profession of landscape architecture, he was an engineer, an entrepreneur, salesman and very effective businessman, running a large organisation working across the country.

Over 500 events organised by 21 partners were attended by hundreds of thousands of people across the country - helping the public gain a greater understanding of the impact and work of Brown. Events included major exhibitions, talks, workshops and performances as well as research, publications and the creation of new landscapes and activities.

Following the growing understanding of his achievements through the Festival and the public’s appetite to recognise and enjoy what he has achieved, it is hoped the extra funds to restore the Memorial to this extraordinary man can be raised.

Ray Whitby, Chair of the Fundraising Committee at Fenstanton Church said, “We are delighted that we have been able to raise half the funds needed to restore the Memorial to this extraordinary man and hope the public can help us reach our fundraising goal over the coming months to get work underway.”

Ceryl Evans, Director of the Capability Brown Festival said, “2016 really put Capability Brown firmly on the map and into the hearts of the public, with hundreds of thousands of people taking part in events to celebrate his work.

“I hope that this momentum created by the Festival can help support the people of Fenstanton and Brown fans everywhere complete the successful restoration, now that Historic England have given the Church Grade I listed status.”

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