Glorious Gardens: The Kerse
Still a pleasure walk today
- Peter Tucker, Glorious Gardens volunteer
Kerse was the residence of John Greenshields, Esq., the author of the historical account of ‘The Annals of the Parish of Lesmahagow’ published in 1864.
The current house at Kerse was built in 1857 from designs by William Spence of Glasgow. The designed landscape, however, predates that house by many decades, with the estate history being traceable back to the early 17th century.
The formal gardens at Kerse were constructed to the south of the residence, whilst to the north looping pleasure walks followed the banks of the River Nethan and cut through the estate’s policy parkland and woodland.
To visit Kerse, there is a small parking area by the roundabout at junction 10 of the M74 from where the original lime tree drive to the Kerse can be followed. A footpath leading off the drive traces the southern boundary of the former gardens to join the tree-lined riverside walk. A path then loops back up a steep hill, through the estate woodland, to re-join the lime tree drive. Whilst the house and its immediate grounds are in private hands and cannot be visited, glimpses of the former garden area can be obtained from the path along its southern perimeter. From there you can spot the garden retaining walls, original stone gate pillars, and the remnants of glasshouses, furnace and chimney.
To find out more about the Estate's history and archaeology, click the links under ‘Related Resources’. This research was carried out as part of the Glorious Gardens volunteer project, which is managed by Scotland's Garden & Landscape Heritage and delivered by Northlight Heritage, with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund supported Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership and from Historic Environment Scotland. To find out more about the project, explore the other museum items below.