A potted history of the gardens
Sidmouth Urban District Council purchased Sea View cottage and its gardens in the early 1930s. The house was in such a poor state that it was demolished leaving only key walls in place to provide sheltered areas for the wide range of plants the gardens now contain. The name comes from the Duke of Connaught, Queen Victoria’s third son, and is a sign of Sidmouth’s historic popularity with the royal family. Victoria had visited Sidmouth as a child and the Duke opened the gardens personally in 1934. Sir John Betjeman (1906-1984), Poet Laureate, wrote: “Pause on Peak Hill, look Eastward to the town, Then to the Connaught Gardens wander down, And in the shelter of its tropic bowers, I see bright and outsize Devon flowers.”
What Chandler’s Cottage guests thought about the Connaught Gardens:
- “Connaught Gardens are beautiful” Karen & Kevin U from Leicester, July 2019.
- “Try cakes and afternoon tea in the Clock Tower (Connaught Gardens) – very nice and wonderful location” Elaine B from Woking, May 2019.
- “Love the walk along the seafront and up to the Connaught Gardens Cafe, it’s a real joy!” Stuart A from Birmingham, April 2019.