Britt work will start again

More work is expected to begin soon at the site of the Peter Britt Gardens restoration in Jacksonville.

Revised plans for development of the site, on Britt Festivals grounds, were approved this month by the city's Historic and Architectural Review Commission. City officials want to put out a request for bids on the first phase of work in early January, award a contract in February and see work begin soon afterward.

Work planned for spring will provide increased trail access, create a space for social gatherings in the house foundation area and upgrade electrical systems.

A fall dig uncovered the site of Peter Britt's pioneer cabin. Jacksonville Boosters, the project organizers, had to modify plans for the garden to protect the home site for future investigation after the earlier dig.

"They found the site of Peter Britt's original cabin and where the Ivy House was located," said Carolyn Kingsnorth of the boosters. "We'll be doing quite a bit less digging. The cabin was dug into the hill. That's what are we are protecting, putting a walk around it."

Britt's elaborate gardens and his house, which burned in 1960, were located on 7.5 acres that Jackson County turned over to the city in May.

Kingsnorth hopes all work can be completed before the Britt Festival begins in June.

— Tony Boom, for the Mail Tribune

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