Garden design school to open at Harewood House

A YORKSHIRE-based garden designer with a word class portfolio, is launching a new school specifically to train designers for northern landscapes.

Alistair Baldwin, who started AWB Associates, a Richmond-based landscape and architectural design consultancy more than 15 years ago, said it was time for a school that teaches budding new designers how to work on the beautiful northern terrain.

The Yorkshire School of Garden Design opens in August with a range of short courses throughout the year – designed for garden design enthusiasts and those wishing to learn more about all aspects of the art , from landscaping to planting. Its flagship Professional Diploma in Garden Planning, delivered over one academic year, begins in September.

The school will be based at Harewood House near Leeds – one of the UK’s Treasure Houses, which has over 100 acres of parkland designed by the eminent 18th century landscape architect Sir Lancelot Capability Brown and also features gardens inspiring, including the Himalayan garden, the walled garden and an Italian terrace.

“The Yorkshire School of Garden Design was born out of my passion for this great art, combined with a deep belief that the North of England calls for such a school,” said founder Alistair Baldwin.

“For too long, budding northern designers have had no local choice when seeking a learning experience to broaden their skills and launch them into the profession.

“Most often students have had to travel all the way to London to find the right course and I thought that needed to change.

“I have lived and worked in North Yorkshire for over three decades and have developed a keen understanding of how the terrain, geology, even climate and way of working is very different in this part of the Kingdom. -United.

“The process of designing and building gardens in this beautiful landscape is very different to the south of England, so I want to share everything I have learned over the past 35 years and inspire a new generation.”

Alistair, born in London, trained in garden design in Leeds and has never left the county since graduating. .

Having spent 12 years teaching landscape and garden design at Leeds Beckett University, while running his practice, Alistair has extensive experience in nurturing the next generation of garden design talent.

“Building a garden design school that uses designers and practicing professionals to deliver its courses has been a hugely important part of the process for me,” Alistair said.

“I am delighted to announce that I will be joined by a distinguished team of world-class design consultants who will work with me to deliver the Professional Diploma course and a range of short courses to those wishing to build a professional career in garden design, or enthusiasts who just want to learn a little more about the art.

“Having a team of practicing garden designers in the YSGD family, all of whom have experience creating rich, well-designed gardens, means that students will get essential practical advice and insight, straight from the horse’s mouth. , on how to design, communicate and deliver amazing gardens,” said Alistair.

Trevor Nicholson, Head Gardener at Harewood House, said: “We are absolutely delighted that the Yorkshire School of Garden Design has its base at Harewood House – which we believe is a fitting and inspiring location for a school that hopes to train design professionals. from the future.

“Harewood House has a history of nurturing classic landscapers and garden designers with its parks and gardens, and I am incredibly delighted to welcome guests and inspire them with the beautiful landscapes of Harewood.”

For more information about the Yorkshire School of Garden Design and all of its courses, visit

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