Date: 24 August 2021
"Japanese gardens have an ancient history influenced by Shinto, Buddhist and Taoist philosophies. Bringing a spiritual sense to the garden, they allow the visitor to look back and reflect.
"Alan de Tatton, the 3rd Baron de Tatton, was inspired to introduce a Japanese garden to the Tatton estate following a visit to the Anglo-Japanese exhibition at the White City, London in 1910. A fashionable trend at the time, a team of Japanese workmen were commissioned to create what is now rated to be one of the finest examples of a Japanese garden in Europe. All the essential elements of a Japanese garden — water, garden plants, stones, waterfalls, trees and bridge — were included."
"SHINTO SHRINE Adjacent to the Torri [sic] gate, the entrance to this sacred area of garden, the Shinto Shrine is the only building on the island. The shrine provided a ‘homing’ site for visiting spirits of ancestors to return."
"TEA HOUSE Tatton’s tea house was an adaptation of a Japanese mountain hut and forms the centre piece of the garden. Apart from the window at the top to allow light in, the only other window faces east (to the rising sun) and looks on to the Shinto Shrine."
"ALMOND EYE BRIDGE Derived from the Chinese design the bridge was ‘drawn out’ to elongate the rather steep design of its origin. The result is a more pleasant shape in the form of an ‘eye’ formed by the bridge’s reflection in the water."
"CRANES The Crane, a classical aspect of all Japanese gardens, is always seen with its partner. Representing age, the presence of a Crane adds 1000 years to a garden and to the life of anyone who gazes upon it. Flying high and being far sighted, the Crane represents human spirit."
"LANTERNS In Japanese gardens lanterns have a variety of functions as well as providing aesthetical appeal. Their principal purpose is to illuminate particular areas of the garden, especially close to bridges and water courses."
— Interpretation panel excerpts