Cook Family Memorial Garden Reopening

The Parish Council hope that the newly restored garden will attract more visitors to the area and increase awareness of Great Ayton and its wonderful history.


The Cook Family Memorial Garden will reopen to the public from Saturday 18th May 2019 after an extensive rejuvenation project partly funded by the LEADER Project which is the rural development fund for the UK alongside Defra and the European Union. Funding was awarded by Hambleton District Council's 'Making a Difference Fund' with support from Parish funds also.

Cook Cottage in 1895 - before the road was widened

Cook Cottage in 1895 - before the road was widened

The cottage was taken down brick by bricked and shipped over to Melbourne 85 years ago where it still stands in the Fitzroy Gardens.

Whilst the original plan was to give the garden a makeover, this then progressed to a full refurbishment including clearing the site, restoring the garden, installing a new footpath, repairing the obelisk, recreating the cottage layout and installing interpretation boards. When contractors came in to produce an outline of the building on the land they came across the original foundations of the cottage by accident. In the middle of February archaelogists, led by John Buglass, visited the site and coducted a three day dig which was visited by local schools and the press.

The Parish Council hope that the newly restored garden will attract more visitors to the area and increase awareness of Great Ayton and its wonderful history.

The opening of the garden coincides with the 250th anniversary in 2019 since Captain James Cook embarked on his first voyage to New Zealand, and the anniversary of the sale of the cottage by Captain Cook’s father on 16th May 1772.

Cook Cottage present day, located in Fitzroy Gardens, Melbourne, Australia

Cook Cottage present day, located in Fitzroy Gardens, Melbourne, Australia

The official reopening commences on Thursday 16th May with a special event for local dignatories, councillors, the press and individuals involved with the project.

For more information about this event please visit https://www.visitgreatayton.com/news-events/news/2019/03/19/cook-family-memorial-garden-reopening