Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Visit the Treasure Houses of England Website for all the latest news and offers.

Visit our new website at www.TreasureHouses.co.uk for all the latest news and offers plus lots of additional information on the historic houses, palaces, castles and gardens of the Treasure Houses of England, UK.












Friday, 3 April 2015

New Treasure Houses Of England Website

Visit the all new Treasure Houses of England website at www.treasurehouses.co.uk for the latest news, events, location information, directions, galleries, competition and sign-up for our e-newsletter and promotions.


Explore and discover England's great palaces, castles and houses...

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Head to Holkham for Family Fun this Easter

Easter at Holkham Hall
Holkham Hall has something for every member of the family this Easter bank holiday weekend (Good Friday 3rd April - Easter Monday 6th April). Enter the Hall for a traditional taste of Easter before exploring the beautiful grounds of the estate where Easter themed trails and activities will entertain and inspire.
To celebrate Easter a magical indoor garden has been designed in the hall to welcome in the first few weeks of Spring. Whilst in the Old Kitchen, younger visitors are invited to test out their culinary skills with the Kiddy Cook team, where children of all ages will have great fun decorating biscuits with colourful Easter designs and get to take away their tasty treat too.

For full details please visit the Treasure Houses website here

Fascinating Exhibition To Show A Glimpse Behind The Scenes Of the Holkham Estate

Behind Closed Doors Exhibition at Holkham Hall
The exhibition, entitled ‘Behind Closed Doors: A Year in the Life of a Working Estate’, features the skilled work of renowned Magnum photographer Chris Steele-Perkins who exhibits regularly worldwide.  The unique photographic record of the estate is the subject of Steele-Perkins’s tenth book, launched in November 2014 entitled ‘A Place in the Country’.

Over a period of 12 months Chris regularly visited Holkham. His captivating, behind-the-scenes style has produced a series of charismatic photographs. These range from informal photos of Viscount and Viscountess Coke with their young family, the gamekeepers on shoot days dressed in their famous bowler hats and the team of gardeners as they work throughout the seasons. The housekeeping team cleaning and caring for the many rooms and the colour and vibrancy portrayed in photographs of the seasonal functions and events are also portrayed.

A selection of key photographs will form the basis of the display and will provide visitors with a real glimpse behind the scenes of what goes into running a large estate in the 21st century. The exhibition will demonstrate that past and present can and do sit side-by-side.  For while Coke of Norfolk – famed for his part in the agricultural revolution – can look down on visitors from a magnificent painting by Gainsborough in one of the state rooms of the hall, outside his drive to improve agriculture continues with a large scale, modern farming operation using the latest machines and new techniques.

It will also show that while the historic fabric of the estate is carefully maintained, new diversification projects such as a hotel and a holiday park, are all part of the Holkham mix. Each generation has a responsibility to preserve and pass on the heritage of the estate. Equally it is important that they make their own mark with new ideas and new ways of running the extensive business which Holkham is today.

Lord Coke said: “We are essentially a very private family so it was a big step to invite someone in to be a part of life at Holkham for 12 months.  Holkham in this generation is a fascinating mix of business interests and custodian responsibilities.  We must develop new ideas and create new income streams while maintaining the great heritage we have at Holkham.  We also have a big responsibility to conserve the many aspects of the estate from conservation of wildlife and landscapes to caring for great works of art and historic furniture and furnishings. This can only be achieved through teamwork and we are fortunate to have such excellent teams looking after everything at Holkham.  We hope this new exhibition will provide a real insight into the life of our estate and the people behind it.”

The exhibition will be open to visitors during the opening hours for Holkham Hall which are 29th March - 31st October 2015 from 12noon-4pm on Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays plus Good Friday and Easter Saturday (3rd & 4th April).

Full details of admission prices and other visitor information can be found on the website www.holkham.co.uk

For more information on all ten Treasure Houses of England, please visit the new website at www.treasurehouses.co.uk

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Cracking Good Fun At Chatsworth this Easter

Easter at Chatsworth
With the house, garden and farmyard wreathed in spring flowers and decorations, there's something for visitors of all ages to enjoy at Chatsworth this Easter, from free face painting in Flora’s Temple to egg hunt trails in the house and garden and of course, the chance to spot the Easter Bunny who will be hopping by to deliver treats every day of the Easter weekend (3 - 6 April).

As well as the hugely popular Easter Egg hunts in the Chatsworth Farmyard over the Easter weekend, catering for up to 1,000 egg hunters a day, children can also climb aboard the Easter Eggspress setting off several times a day.

For more information please click here: http://www.treasurehouses.co.uk/news/Cracking%20Good%20Fun%20At%20Chatsworth%20this%20Easter

Friday, 13 March 2015

Beaulieu Boat Jumble - Sunday 26th April 2015

As spring approaches and the days get longer, sailors start to prepare their boats for the season ahead. Beaulieu’s annual Boatjumble, arriving at just the right time of year on Sunday 26th April, isn’t just the largest outdoor sale of boating items in Europe, but also an enjoyable day out for the whole family.
Beaulieu Boat Mart
You will be spoilt for choice by the hundreds of stands, offering everything you might need to stay afloat for another year, from anchors, chains, rope and fenders, to outboard engines, sails and clothing. Browse, barter, do a deal and enjoy the day.

Visit Boatmall for the very latest products on offer from leading manufacturers, covering every aspect of boating, with deck shoes, dinghies, engine spares and even trailerable yachts on offer. If you’re in the market for a new boat, make sure you see the selection on sale in Boatmart, while Trunk Traders will be the place to find a bargain, with amateur jumblers selling off their surplus nautical paraphernalia.
For hands-on activities for children and adults alike, head over to the Display Arena. Clamber up the climbing wall provided by Calshot Activity Centre, and if you’re feeling fit, have a go on the Centre’s kayak training machine. The Maritime Archaeology Trust will be returning with their popular surf simulator and Maritime bus, while younger visitors will love the nautical themed slides and rides in the Children’s Entertainment Zone.

Boatjumble media sponsor, Practical Boat Owner, will be bringing their popular Ask the Experts feature to life, with practical demonstrations from leading marine experts. Relating essential know-how and answering your nautical questions, they will cover a range of popular how-to topics, including basic fibreglass skills, radar operation, knots and splices for rigging, life jacket checks, diesel engine maintenance and more besides. The magazine’s own restoration project yacht, a Snapdragon 23 named Hantu Biru, will also be on display for visitors to see up-close.

The International Boatbuilding Training College will be on hand to explain their training programme of traditional boatbuilding skills, while a selection of classic racing boats, belonging to members of the Classic Motor Boat Association, will be on display, along with a marine photography exhibition from the Beaulieu Camera Group.

The Marine Police unit will be teaming up with explosive experts Ramora UK to offer a Flare Disposal Service; simply bring along your unwanted flares for the explosive ordnance disposal team.

The all-inclusive admission tickets cost £9.70 for adults and £7.50 for children on-the-day, and allow entry not only to the Boatjumble, but the whole of the Beaulieu attraction. See the astonishing collection of vehicles in the National Motor Museum and enjoy On Screen Cars, World of Top Gear, Beaulieu Abbey and Palace House.

Advance tickets are available to purchase for the even lower price of £8.70 for adults and £6.50 for children, available up to 19th April by phoning 01590 612888 or booking online at www.beaulieushop.co.uk.

For traders, stand prices start at £55 for a single space, but with multi-stand reductions for 2015, you can upgrade to a double-size space stand for just another £35. Boatmart spaces are £30, while Trunk Traders pitches are £35. To book a Stand, Trunk Trader or Boatmart space call the Events Department on 01590 614614 or email events@beaulieu.co.uk.

Boatmall and Boatmart are open to visitors at 9am and Boatjumble at 10am, with the show closing at 5pm. A free shuttle bus service will be running between Lymington Ferry Terminal, Brockenhurst Station and Buckler’s Hard, from 8am and 6pm.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Capture The Castle - Castle Howard Photography Competition

Castle Howard, one of Yorkshire’s grandest country houses, is inviting amateur photographers to put their camera skills to the test and capture the castle, its grounds and gardens as well as the wider estate in a new photography competition ‘Castle Howard: Through My Eyes’, from Saturday 14 March to Thursday 31 December.

Photographer Nick Howard
From its imposing architecture, sweeping vistas, lakes, woodland, monuments and fountains to the formal gardens, flora and fauna and rolling Howardian Hills, Castle Howard offers endless opportunities to be inspired.

Nick Howard, who will judge the competition, commented: ‘Having grown up at Castle Howard I am well aware of the unique qualities of our beautiful Yorkshire landscape, with every season bringing something new to admire and enjoy. As a keen photographer myself, I feel inspired every time I venture out, camera in hand, and look forward to reviewing the many fantastic entries I am sure we will receive.’

For more information please click here:  http://www.treasurehouses.co.uk/news/Capture%20The%20Castle

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Ten things to do and discover this March at Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace

  1.  Ai Weiwei Tours at Blenheim PalaceTake a closer look at Ai Weiwei.

    This free tour lasts one hour and gives you the opportunity to discover the history of the artist Ai Weiwei, learn of how the exhibition was put together and find out about the inspiration behind the pieces on display inside the Palace.

    Mondays & Fridays from 11:30-12:30 until 30th April, Adult £22.50 Concession £18.00 Child £12.30 Family £59.00 (Palace, Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com

  2. Mother’s Day at Blenheim Palace

    Enjoy a delicious three-course Sunday Lunch served in the elegant Orangery at Blenheim Palace, overlooking the private Italian Garden. Diners can also enjoy live jazz music too. Prior booking is advised.

    15thMarch, from £28.50 per person + Adult £22.50 Concession £18.00 Child £12.30 Family £59.00 (Palace, Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com
  3. Film Inspired Days Out

    As Cinderella comes out in cinemas this month (scenes filmed at Blenheim Palace) we are celebrating all the fantastic films that have been filmed at Blenheim Palace over the years. Find out all the behind the scenes activity with a specialist tour.

    Saturdays 3pm & Mondays 2pm booking required, Adult £22.50 Concession £18.00 Child £12.30 Family £59.00 (Palace, Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com
  4. Spring Equinox

    Enjoy the start of Spring at Blenheim Palace with walks around the beautiful Formal Gardens and over 2,000 acres of ‘Capability’ Brown landscaped Parkland. Spot spring lambs on the estate and see the fantastic Blenheim Palace daffodils.

    Adult £13.50 Child £6.60 Family £36.00 (Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com
  5. Ceramics & Furniture Specialist Tour

    See the intriguing details of Blenheim Palace’s porcelain and furniture collections, not always visible from behind the ropes. From Chinese porcelain and Japanese Imari, to fine and rare furniture examples by AndrĂ© Charles Boulle. The presentation will be followed by a tour of the palace, enabling you to see these pieces in situ.

    21st March 10.30am, Booking Necessary, Tour Price £7.50 + Adult £22.50 Concession £18.00 Child £12.30 Family £59.00 (Palace, Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com
  6. OX5 Run Charity 5K

    Raising money for the Oxford Children’s Hospital, the OX5 RUN is suitable for all levels of runners and the five mile route takes in the glorious surrounds of Blenheim Palace. Last year run raised a record-breaking £114,000.

    29th March – prior registration required, £10, blenheimpalace.com

  7.  Cleaning of 10,000 Books

    Visit the Long Library to see over 10,000 books, all which have been cleaned individually by hand. The Long Library was one of Churchill’s favourite places to spend an entire evening! Ready for World Book Day the Long Library has been cleaned by Blenheim Palace staff.

    5th March (World Book Day), Adult £22.50 Concession £18.00 Child £12.30 Family £59.00 (Palace, Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com
  8. Planting has begun in the Churchill Memorial Garden

    Garden Designer, Kim Wilkie and Head Gardener at Blenheim Palace, Hilary Wood have begun the first bed measuring and planting in the Churchill Memorial Garden which opens at the beginning of June.
  9. Public Speaking Competition

    The finals of the Winston Churchill Public Speaking Competition take place on 17 March. Schools from across the country will take part in this exciting event which will be judged by the Duchess of Marlborough, Lady Henrietta and members of the Churchill family.

    17th March, Press Passes Available
  10. Private Apartments Tour

    For 2015 visitors will have the exclusive opportunity to explore the East Side of the Palace; the Duke of Marlborough's Private Apartments. Discover the opulence of the rooms in which the Marlborough family have lived for generations, and learn how family life at Blenheim Palace has changed in the past 300 years.

    Booking on the day, £6.50 + Adult £22.50 £5.00 + Concession £18.00 - booking essential (Palace, Park & Gardens ticket), blenheimpalace.com (not recommended for children)

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

200 Butterflies Released in to Blenheim Palace’s Butterfly House

Butterfly release
More than 200 native and exotic butterflies have been released in to Blenheim Palace’s newly renovated Butterfly House.

A member of Blenheim Palace staff helped release dozens of exotic species from Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines alongside a selection of native butterflies in time for the start of the February Half Term holidays.

Alongside the live butterflies, staff also delivered around 180 pupae from Africa and the Philippines which have been placed in the Butterfly House’s hatchery area where visitors can see them develop within their chrysalises before being released in to the main area.

Garden staff have planted a wide variety of nectar-rich flowers including marguerite, black eyed Susan’s, hydrangea and hibiscus. There are also sugar bowls and fruit from which the butterflies can feed.

Head of Gardens, Hilary Wood, said: “It’s an amazing sight to see the house filled with exotic butterflies once again and we’re expecting many more to hatch out over the coming days.”

The butterflies share their home with a colony of Zebra Finch.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Churchill Exhibition at Blenheim Palace

The Oxfordshire World Heritage Site, which was the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, announces a newly-curated Churchill Exhibition for 2015.

Churchill Exhibition
The Churchill Exhibition opening marks the start of a year of commemoration as the nation recognises three key anniversaries; the 50th anniversary of his death, the 75th anniversary of his becoming Prime Minister and the 75th anniversary of, arguably, his finest hour during the Battle of Britain. 

The Churchill Exhibition includes a series of new displays and features aimed at providing a fascinating insight in to the life of our ‘Greatest Briton’. 

Each of the five rooms situated in the Palace will include a selection of new images, artefacts and audio as well as a replica uniform from his military days. Visitors will have the chance to listen to his most iconic speeches as well as learn more about his childhood at Blenheim Palace.

The exhibition will also focus on the great man’s state funeral, which brought the nation to a halt as they paid their final respects. The tour will include never-been-seen-before images from the funeral at Bladon Church.

New artefacts include an original Queen's Own Oxfordshire Hussars uniform, worn by Churchill’s colleague Ferdinand St. John. Visitors will again be able to see Churchill’s velvet ‘romper’ suit also known as the ‘Siren Suit’. He was known for wearing it with his monogrammed slippers whilst in the Cabinet War Rooms. 

Other never-seen-before items, including his pony saddle, help to paint the picture of Churchill’s childhood. Tales of his early equestrian career feature in his juvenile letters from boarding school to his Grandmother, the 7th Duchess of Marlborough.

The interactive exhibition now uses multi-media to enhance the visitor experience including video content which is screened within the rooms. There are transcripts from private communications and a section is dedicated to Churchill’s past love interests too. 

The Churchill Exhibition opens from 14 February – 20 December, more information can be found at blenheimpalace.com

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

10 Exhibitions not to miss at The Treasure Houses of England 2015

Winston Churchill Exhibition
From artistic masterpieces to fascinating historical exhibitions, The Treasure Houses of England look set to deliver a captivating programme of exciting events this year. Here are 10 exhibitions not to miss!

Beaulieu’s new Motorsport Exhibition opens on Friday 6 March 2015. The new exhibition will include two exciting new displays: Grand Prix Greats and Road, Race and Rally perfect for motoring enthusiasts and families to enjoy.

Blenheim Palace unveils a reinvigorated Winston Churchill Exhibition on 14 February. The exhibition marks the beginning of a year of commemorative activities and events at Blenheim Palace and includes a series of new and never-before-seen displays and features, providing a fascinating insight into Churchill’s life.

Burghley’s exhibition Oriental Ceramics, showcases star items from Burghley’s World- famous collections including the unusual Wrestling Boys, who were famously used as a doorstop for many years before their provenance was discovered.  The exhibition highlights the differences between Japanese and Chinese variants.
Burghley Collectibles and Curiosities

Duty Calls, an exciting exhibition from Waterloo to World War II, explores the stories of Castle Howard in times of war, giving a glimpse into a hitherto unknown chapter of the family and estate.

From 28 March - 23 October, experience Chatsworth in a whole new way with contemporary seating exhibition Make Yourself Comfortable at Chatsworth. Contemporary seating by international designers, such as Marc Newson, Moritz Waldemeyer and Thomas Heatherwick will be shown throughout Chatsworth, bringing to light new stories about the interior and the historic collection.

Harewood will showcase a collection of gift boxes in a special display on the State Floor in the new A Gift from the Whole Nation from 3 April –1 Nov. The gift boxes are some of the ‘thank you’ presents given by Princess Mary in 1914 to send to the troops at Christmas time. In total over 426,724 gift boxes had been made and distributed in just two months helping boost moral for serving troops.

Art in Clay at Hatfield House is an outdoor summer exhibition from 3 - 5 July. Showcasing over 190 ceramists in the beautiful parkland visitors can see some of the finest ceramics currently being made by individual makers in the UK and Europe.

For one year renowned Magnum photographer Chris Steele-Perkins had unrestricted access to Holkham Hall and the estate. Behind Closed Doors:  A Year in the Life of a Working Estate is the stunning collection of extraordinary and intimate photographs that resulted. Runs from 29 March - 31 October.

From May the world famous Leeds Castle Dog Collar Collection returns to public display. More than 130 collars will be on view in a new display, in the largest public collection of dog collars and it documents the history of canine fashions dating from the 16th century into modern times.

Visitors can experience the largest private collection of Venetian Views by Canaletto on public view at Woburn Abbey. There are 21 paintings on display in the Dining Room. Opening 27 March 2015.

Monday, 19 January 2015

Blenheim Palace New Year Deep Clean

Visitor Services Assistant Reza Kazemi
with Clare Sheridan’s bust of Winston
Churchill which she sculpted in 1942
For many home-owners New Year is the perfect time to make a start on some serious house-cleaning.

However when the ‘house’ in question is World Heritage Site Blenheim Palace and the contents includes priceless works of art and unique historical items a little more scientific approach is required.

A team of Blenheim Palace Cleaners are hard at work on a pre-season ‘deep clean’ of both the Palace itself and its entire collection which includes unique items belonging to Sir Winston Churchill who was born at Blenheim.

Visitor Services Assistant Reza Kazemi
uses a specialist museum vacuum cleaner
on Churchill’s famous siren suit
The cleaning process takes six weeks with a team of up to 10 people working daily.

Blenheim Palace’s Kate Ballenger said: “Each room is carefully stripped of all the furniture and artefacts and is vacuumed from the ceiling to the floor.

“The floors are then cleaned and polished. Whilst this is occurring, our specialist cleaning team carefully clean each item, before it is returned to the room.

“We use a variety of tools from museum vacuum cleaners with HEPA filters to natural bristle brushes such as hogs’ hair or pony hair, depending on the object we are cleaning.

“Polishes are kept to a minimum, as they can build up over time and we do not use aerosol sprays. Stubborn dirt is removed by distilled water,” she added.

Among the items undergoing cleaning is one of Churchill’s iconic zipped one-piece siren suits which became forever linked to the great man during WWII. Churchill had them specially-made by his Jermyn Street tailors Turnbull & Asser and dubbed them his ‘romper’ suits.

A comfortable one-piece zipped garment – the siren suit could be quickly put on over other clothing in case of air-raids. It was so popular with Churchill he had a number made in different materials including wool, pinstripe and velvet – like this one.

The famous bust of Sir Winston Churchill created by his first cousin sculptor and writer Clare Sheridan in 1942 is also undergoing a thorough clean in readiness for a newly-created Churchill exhibition which is set to open at Blenheim Palace on February 14th.

The exhibition is part of a major celebration of the great man’s achievements to coincide with the 50th anniversary of his death.

Other new features to mark the anniversary include a ‘Walk in Churchill’s Footsteps’ family trail and a Churchill Memorial Garden, designed by award-winning garden designer Kim Wilkie.

Specific items being cleaned include:

- 40 busts and sculptures
- 28 Marble tables

- 10,000 books
- 18 clocks
- 38 pieces of armour
- 200 pieces of porcelain