Holdenby House, a Northamptonshire estate managed by Fisher German, will re-open its gardens and falconry on Sundays from 2 August to 27 September following the easing of government lockdown measures.
Built in 1583, the historic estate was once the largest private house in England and subsequently the palace of King James I and prison of King Charles I. The estate boasts 20 acres of gardens and is featured in the book ‘1001 Gardens You must See Before You Die’.
Visitors will be able to enjoy areas including the Elizabethan Garden which was replanted in 1980 by Rosemary Verey using only plants available in 1580, King Charles’s Walk where Charles exercised during his imprisonment, the Silver Border featuring a collection of silver-leafed plants, the Kitchen Garden and Tous Tous fragrant border.
As well as the gardens, members of the public will also be able to see the Icarus Falconry, based on the estate, with its collection of eagles, buzzards, kite, falcons and owls. There will also be the opportunity to pre-book refreshments which visitors can enjoy during their visit.
The historic Grade I gardens will be open from 11am to 4pm with visitor numbers capped at 100 per day, and people must book in advance through the Holdenby House website. A number of safety measures have been implemented including a one-way system around the gardens, hand sanitising stations and additional cleaning of the toilet facilities.
Holdenby has appeared in the BBC adaptations of ‘Great Expectations’ and ‘The Women in White’ and well as the Smithsonian Channel’s ‘An American Aristocrat's Guide to Great Estates’ which aired in the UK earlier this year and has recently aired in the US.
James Lowther, owner of Holdenby House, said: “We are extremely pleased to announce the re-opening of our spectacular gardens and we look forward to welcoming visitors. Our main priority is the safety of our visitors and staff, so our safety measures are there to make sure everyone can have an enjoyable day with confidence. The route is fully signposted and there will be a map and brief guide to the gardens. Holdenby is also an extremely popular wedding venue, and we are also once again welcoming enquiries about events from 2021 onwards.”
Tickets may now be purchased on Holdenby’s website www.holdenby.com and further details can be found on the website and the estate’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.