Encompassing a total of ten of England’s most spectacular castles, palaces and houses, the magnificent Treasure Houses of England are an absolute must-see this autumn.
Affording visitors the rare opportunity to explore a real life ‘Downton Abbey’, the houses continue to reign as Hollywood hits, having been strewn across the silver screen in a tally of TV and films such as ‘Harry Potter’, ‘The Kings Speech’, ‘Brideshead Revisited’, ‘Hot Fuzz’ and ‘Sherlock Holmes’ to name a few.
Offering a complete living history of English life over the centuries, most of the houses are still home to the families that have resided there for generations, providing a unique insight into the lives both up and downstairs at these incredible sites of historic grandeur.
Housing some of the most revered art collections in the world, visitors are treated to master artworks by the likes of Rubens, Gainsborough and Van Dyck alongside priceless pieces of fine furniture, china and porcelain from Chippendale, Meissen and Wedgewood.
With an array of guided tours and scenes specially recreated for visitors, examples of some of the highlights on offer include a ‘Staff and Servants Exhibition’ at Woburn Abbey, the recent restoration of Hatfield House’s original kitchen where Queen Victoria’s banquet was prepared for her 1846 visit, and costumed guides at Beaulieu who assume the characters of the household staff that were integral to the running of the house – and the people who lived there.
Every house provides a distinctive and dramatic setting for a day out amidst achingly beautiful backdrops where guests can sample a nostalgic age imbued with a rich history from the 9th century to today. All the grounds are different, with some offering sweeping panoramas of parkland and others gorgeous landscaped gardens scattered with statues, lakes, fountains, cafes, adventure playgrounds - and even a golf course at Leeds Castle.
From gourmet days and bird displays to art and motorcar exhibitions, a variety of events across all of the houses ensure an eclectic mix of entertainment, cultural insight and outstanding architecture for an unforgettable – and quintessentially English – experience guaranteeing fun for all the family.
For more information visit www.treasurehouses.co.uk
Houses include: Beaulieu, Blenheim Palace, Burghley House, Castle Howard, Chatsworth, Harewood House, Hatfield House, Holkham Hall, Leeds Castle and Woburn Abbey.