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Ross-on-Wye

The Prospect

The Prospect is opposite the church, this is a neat public garden populated by ancient trees.

The Prospect Ross-on-Wye
The first view through the gates into the Prospect
(Click for a larger image)


The Prospect was created by John Kyrle and offers superb views over the Wye, which is a hundred feet below, right out to the Welsh mountains. This piece of land was rented by John Kyrle off the Marquess of Bath in 1696 and turned into a garden and walking area.

In around 1870 there were some problems over land ownership. James Barrett built the Royal Hotel and took some of the Prospect to make the gardens for the hotel. As a result of this, there were massive riots by the towns folk of Ross as they believed that the Prospect belonged to the town and that Barrett had taken the land off them. As a result, Thomas Blake eventually resolved the issue and paid for the land to transferred to the towns people forever and the garden was then laid out similarly to the format seen there today.


The Prospect
The Prospect from the south-east corner
(Click for a larger image)

The Prospect river view
The view over the river
(Click for a larger image)
The Prospect landscape views
The view over the landscape
(Click for a larger image)


The Prospect also has some interesting stone work and the church is again the backdrop.

The Prospect, as designed by John Kyrle, was square with four entrances, one in the centre of each of its sides. Unfortunately the building of Wilton Road in 1833, changed the landscape west of the Prospect meaning that there was no longer room for an entrance there and in 1837 James Barrett took over part of the Prospect for the use of the Royal Hotel patrons. This resulted in the removal of the northern gate and halved the size the garden.

The Prospect arch
A gateway between the prospect and church yard called 'Kerles' or 'Kyrles' Gateway and was built by John Kyrle in 1700
(Click for a larger image)
The Prospect view of St Mary
The Church through the trees
(Click for a larger image)

Here we see a photographic postcard view (published by Valentine's) of the Prospect from circa. 1939. There are various flower beds and the entrance from the church yard can be seen in the distance.

The Prospect view of St Mary
An old view of the Prospect
(Click for a larger image)

The Prospect view of St Mary
An old view of the Prospect entrance
(Click for a larger image)

Here we see a postcard view, unknown publisher, from around 1905 looking out of the Prospect gateway back into the churchyard with the back of the church tower in the distance.

Many thanks to Richard Mayo for allowing me to use this card


The Prospect also contains Ross' War Memorial for World War 1 and a V.E. day beacon that was lit on the 8th May 1995 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Victory in Europe.

The war memorial has since been moved to the centre of the Prospect as a result of the excavations of the Roman remains in the south-west corner.

The Prospect war memorials
The War Memorials (in the original position)
(Click for a larger image)


The Prospect is dominated by the ancient trees and the many birds and animals that utilise them.

A squirrel eating the chestnuts falling from the ancient trees in the Prospect
(Click for a larger image)

A robin in the Prospect
(Click for a larger image)



next Trees in the Church Almshouses previous


[Page updated: Aug 11 2011 21:00:40]






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