A late C18 park developed as pleasure grounds from the mid C19, with a C20 woodland garden.
In the medieval period Chyverton was the property of the Arundell family, and subsequently passed to a tenant, John Rosogan. In 1724 it was purchased by John Andrew of Trevallance. Chyverton was inherited by his great-grandson, John Thomas, a lawyer from Truro who served as Vice-Warden of the Stanneries for thirty-four years. In the 1760s Thomas remodelled the existing house, and moved his business activities from Truro to Chyverton (Pett 1998). Some ten years later a park and an eyecatcher folly were created to complement the remodelled house. Gilbert (1820) noted that despite unpromising surroundings, 'by industry and expense, Chyverton displays many beauties, consisting of neat sheets of water, fine gardens, and thriving plantations'. In the early C19 the property passed by marriage to the Peter family. John Thomas Henry Peter (1810-73) married the daughter of John P Magor of Penventon, who in 1849 inherited Lamellan, Cornwall (qv). Chyverton remained in the Peter family until 1924 when it was sold to Treve Holman, who planted an extensive collection of rhododendrons and magnolias with the advice of Sir Harold Hillier (1905-85). After the Second World War Holman concentrated on extending his collection of magnolias, work continued by his son and daughter-in-law who succeeded to the property in 1959. Today (2000) Chyverton remains in divided private ownership.
LOCATION, AREA, BOUNDARIES, LANDFORM, SETTING
Chyverton Park is situated c 0.5km north of the village of Marazanvose and to the south of the village of Cost-is-lost, to the north-west of the A30 road. The c 58ha site is bounded to the south-east by the A30 road, while the east, north, and west boundaries are formed by minor roads. The course of these roads was altered in 1770 to enable the enclosure of the park (estate srvey, 1770). To the south-west the site adjoins Quarryclose Plantation, and to the south it is bordered by agricultural land. The site occupies a shallow west-facing valley, with higher ground rising to the east and north. There were formerly views north-east from the house towards Tinkers Castle or Hunter's Tower but these have been obscured by C19 and C20 planting.
ENTRANCES AND APPROACHES
Chyverton Park is today (2000) approached by a short drive which leads from the public road to the south-west. The late C18 stables (listed grade II) are situated to the south-west of the house, adjacent and to the west of the south-west drive.
An earlier drive enters the park from the A30 road to the south-east adjacent to a mid or late C19 lodge (listed grade II). The drive sweeps north and west through the park and Merton Plantation before dividing, one branch extending north to the kitchen garden, while the principal drive turns south-west to cross the south-east end of a sinuous lake north-east of the house on a bridge (listed grade II*). The bridge was constructed c 1780 and formed part of John Thomas' late C18 park landscape. The drive continues south-west and north-west through an area of lawns and pleasure grounds to approach the house from the south-east.
Chyverton Park stands near the western boundary of the site. The house was initially constructed for John Andrews in the mid C18, and was extended c 1770 for John Thomas.
GARDENS AND PLEASURE GROUNDS
The gardens and pleasure grounds lie to the north-east of the house. Lawns lead down from the house to the lake, which formed part of the late C18 landscape developed by John Thomas. Beyond the lake, the gently rising wooded land is planted informally with a collection of ornamental trees and shrubs. This ornamental planting was started in the 1870s and was enhanced and extended from the 1920s by Treve Holman with the advice of Sir Harold Hillier. The pleasure grounds today (2000) contain a notable collection of magnolias assembled principally since 1945.
The late C18 park is today an area of mixed plantations towards the centre of the site and to the east of the pleasure grounds. The late C18 design left the heart of the site as open fields or paddocks; these were planted-up in the 1840s as a pinetum by John Thomas' son-in-law, John Peter.
The kitchen garden is situated c 500m north-north-east of the house, adjoining the minor road which forms the northern boundary of the site. The garden is enclosed by stone walls c 3m high, and is reached by a service drive which leads from the south-east drive through the pleasure grounds.
A house (outside the site here registered), today (2000) known as Tinkers Castle but originally named Hunter's Tower, is situated c 250m north of Cost-is-lost, some 1.25km north-east of the house. This structure was built in the late C18 as a folly and eyecatcher to be seen from the house and pleasure grounds, and formed part of John Thomas' scheme of improvements. The tower was extended for domestic use in the C20; the reciprocal view from the house has been obscured by the growth of C19 and C20 trees (Pett 1998).
C S Gilbert, Historical Survey of Cornwall ii, (1820), p 683
T Moule, The Counties Delineated: Cornwall (1837), p 306
Lake's Parochial History of Cornwall iv, (1872), p 57
N Pevsner and E Radcliffe, The Buildings of England: Cornwall (2nd edn 1970), p 140
P M Synge, The Gardens of Britain I, (1977), pp 93-5
G Plumptre, British Gardens (1985), pp 235-7
D E Pett, The Parks and Gardens of Cornwall (1998), p 173
Estate survey, 1770 (private collection)
Sale particulars, 1833 (Cornwall Record Office)
Description written: September 2000
Amended: October 2000
Register Inspector: JML
Edited: October 2001