The Dewstow Gardens and Grottos in Wales are deceptively beautiful. Built in 1895, the surface looked like any normal estate garden as you can see in the photo below.
But just below lay a secret world, full of water falls and fountains and lushly green ferns. It was a fairy land. An unexpected world for discovery and daydreams.
During WWII these underground gardens and grottos were covered by tons of dirt and weren’t rediscovered and renovated until 2000.
Can you imagine how amazing it would be to have discovered this fanciful masterpiece under the garden you were fixing up? I’ve always loved discovering the past that lays just under the surface of our world. I think it’s one of the reasons I write historical fiction– because I’m always wondering what people’s lives were like as they stood in the same spot I am standing and look out over the same vistas I am seeing.
Ever since I was a child, living in a house built in 1910, I’ve been fascinated with digging down to discover the worlds below. And I’ve been fascinated with the possibility of fairies living secretly, just under the flower petal, or beneath a mossy hill. This garden, for me, would be the most magical thing my childhood self could come across. Even now, I’m wondering how to work it into a story, or my next trip.