The Verney Memorial Lecture 2015

The founding of the Eden Project, an illustrated lecture by
Co-founder of the Eden Project

Millions of people have visited the internationally acclaimed Eden Project in Cornwall, which has been called the Eighth Wonder of the World. It was created by two inspirational people, Tim Smit, the owner of Heligan Gardens, and Cornish architect Jonathan Ball, as a Millennium Project and landmark attraction for Cornwall. They had an extraordinary vision, born in the course of an amazing six-hour conversation in September 1994: to create the largest greenhouses on Planet Earth to tell the story of the great plant hunters, and to create a museum of plant history.

On Friday 27th March 2015 we had the opportunity to hear from co-founder Jonathan Ball about the eventful six years which led up to the opening of the project, at a lecture entitled “Everyman’s Eden”, held at the Farnham Maltings. The lecture was organised by the Farnham Building Preservation Trust as the second in the trust’s new series of Verney Memorial Lectures.

Jonathan Ball, who describes himself as first and foremost a Cornishman, is a distinguished architect who was appointed MBE for services to architecture in 1992. He was installed as a Bard of the Cornish Gorsedh in 2002, served on the crew of Bude Lifeboat for 25 years and was President of Surf Life Saving Great Britain from 2001 to 2009.

The lecture also included an opportunity to see displays illustrating many of the important conservation projects undertaken by the Farnham Trust in the 47 years since its foundation in 1968.