Four adventures in one, set in the magical landscape of Lowther Castle
We at Disconnected Press love the classic “choose your own adventure” books, and we wanted to capture some of their spirit and excitement in Secret Gardens.
There are four adventures in the book, all set in the gardens and grounds of Lowther Castle. From one beginning, you – the reader – decide which way you want to go. As you explore, you may well meet witches, ghosts, elves, lords and ladies, some very organised squirrels and a rather grumpy army.
Copies of Secret Gardens are available in the gift shop at Lowther Castle.
Lowther sits a few miles outside Penrith in the Lake District. It’s a landscape of rolling hills, valleys that stretch for miles and a lot of water – whether falling out of the sky or settled on the land. Lowther Castle has long been a favourite stop of ours. It’s peaceful, full of quirky history and just an incredibly beautiful place to watch the weather go by.
The Castle was finished in 1806, but was abandoned by the Lowther family when they fell on hard times in the mid-twentieth century. Look back through time and you find earlier castles, gardens evolving from the natural landscape, times of opulence and times of hardship. You find pioneering agriculturalists, ambitious merchants, confident industrialists, decadent playboys, sporting patrons, soldiers and stars – and that’s just the family…
We approached Lowther Castle and Gardens Trust with the idea of a comic or illustrated book early in 2015. We’ve always been keen on using comics to explore and interpret the world around us, and the Trust welcomed the idea of a book that would help interpret the Lowther landscape in new and exciting ways for different audiences. Secret Gardens blends history, folklore and imagination into four choose your own adventure tales, with comic pages and illustrations to bring the world of Lowther to life.
Secret Gardens is available from the gift shop at Lowther Castle. Alternatively, you can order your copy of Secret Gardens for £5 plus P&P by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or visiting http://www.comicsy.co.uk/disconnectedpress/.
Words by Lizzie Boyle
Art by Conor Boyle
Production and lettering by Jim Campbell
With thanks to Anna Saczek and all at Lowther Castle and Gardens Trust