Luton Hoo appoints new head gardener to look after the estate

Luton Hoo Hotel, Golf and Spa has appointed a new head gardener to keep the 1,065 acres of the estate and grounds in good condition.

Douglas Francis, an experienced horticulturalist, has joined Luton Hoo from his previous role as deputy head gardener at Woburn Abbey, home to the Duke and Duchess of Bedford.

Douglas Francis is the new head gardener at Luton Hoo

Douglas Francis is the new head gardener at Luton Hoo

There he oversaw all of the estate’s operations, including the private gardens of the Duke and Duchess.

His new role as Head Gardener at Luton Hoo will include the management of a team of 8 gardeners, including two apprentices working towards their NVQ level 3 extended diploma in horticulture. He will also oversee new initiative and planned restoration projects.

Douglas said: “Everyone has been really welcoming and it is extremely exciting to work on an estate with so much history. I’m keen to bring in some new ideas to further develop the estate, as well as maintaining the already beautiful gardens.”

The current house and grounds were originally built in the 18th century by Robert Adam, for the 3rd Earl of Bute and the grounds designed by the famous landscape architect Capability Brown.

Matthew Long, General Manager of Luton Hoo Hotel, Golf & Spa said: “After an extensive search to find the right person for the unique position of Head Gardener at Luton Hoo, we were delighted to meet Douglas who is the perfect fit for the role.

"He brings a wealth of experience that will no doubt inspire those working with him, he will be a fantastic asset to our estates team.”