In Memory of Steve: Enhancing Robinson’s Gardens

Dr Latham’s tribute to Steve, below, perfectly captures his love of the Robinson Gardens, one of the areas of College life that Steve was most passionate about and one of the places around Robinson that we all associate with him. Many people who knew Steve expressed the wish to make a contribution in his memory, and enriching the spaces that Steve loved seems the most fitting tribute. Your support will help us to enhance the orchard at 2 Adams Road and provide additional planting and seating in Steve’s name, so that everyone can rest and enjoy this wonderful green space.

If you would like to make a gift towards this project in Steve’s memory, please donate here. Please do also leave your message in tribute to Steve, which we will feature on our remembrance wall.

If you require a paper donation form, please download here.

Steve is greatly missed, but with your help, we will ensure his legacy and love for the Gardens is never forgotten.

Dr Steve Trudgill (1947 – 2021)

Perhaps it’s unsurprising that as a geographer, who also had a keen interest in the natural world and visual arts, Dr Steve Trudgill was passionate in his enthusiasm for Robinson’s gardens. In practical terms, this translated to chairing the college’s Gardens Committee for over 20 years until his untimely demise earlier this year. This period saw many significant changes involving the gardens, including the creation of the waterside terracing on the main lawn, which Steve helped to fund, the installation of the Maria Bjornson Theatre, and landscaping around the Crausaz Wordsworth Building.

There were also many, more modest though still important, projects such as the new heritage orchard at 2 Adams Road, introducing courtyard planters and the addition of thousands of spring bulbs to enhance the college environment. Always keen to hear the views of student members of the Gardens Committee, Steve was particularly delighted by the advent of the Robinson Gardening Society and the success of the resulting student garden. He was also committed to supporting biodiversity and sustainability in the gardens, trialling the introduction of wildflower areas in college many years before this became a widespread trend.

Truly devoted to the gardens, his vision and enthusiasm played an immeasurable role in the continued development of one of Robinson College’s most important assets, which in accordance with the ethos of the college has always been accessible and enjoyable to all. Indeed, such was his commitment to ensuring that as many people as possible could benefit from the gardens, he expanded the college’s participation in the NGS Open Gardens Scheme which raises money for several national charities, as well as instigating the popular annual Garden Tours led by our Head Gardener, Guy Fuller, as part of the annual Open Cambridge event.

Steve’s contribution to Robinson’s gardens has been immense and his wisdom and knowledge will be sorely missed.

Dr Christine Latham, Fellow Emerita, Chair of the Robinson College Gardens Committee