National Trust properties around the West Midlands region

This feature from our community looks at houses and gardens that you can visit in the West Midlands Region that are owned by the National Trust. Take a look, then go and visit.


Across the West Midlands, there are so many great National Trust properties to go and visit and enjoy. This feature pulls together a collection of resources you will find helpful including articles, useful links to web sites, and a gallery of photography. We're in the process of creating our own regional map of all great places to visit and will be added to this feature. In the meantime, use the National Trust website.

Some of the National Trust houses and gardens are in urban areas such as towns and cities. Others are out in the countryside in counties such as Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire or Shropshire.  There really is something for everyone. 

 

West Midlands County

Why not go and experience Back to Backs in Birmingham or Wightwick Manor in Wolverhampton.

Back to Backs NT

Back to Backs. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

The Roundhouse is currently being restored, but will be added  to the National Trust portfolio of places to visit in the future.

The Roundhouse

The Roundhouse. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Wightwick Manor

Wightwick Manor.  Photography by Elliott Brown

Other great National Trust properties across the West Midlands county include Moseley Old Hall (near Wolverhampton). More information here Birmingham and West Midlands.

Moseley Old Hall

Moseley Old Hall. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Warwickshire 

Across Warwickshire, you could go and visit properties and gardens such as Baddesley Clinton and Packwood House.

Baddesley Clinton

Baddesley Clinton. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Packwood House

Packwood House. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Other great National Trust properties across Warwickshire include Upton House and Gardens, Charlecote Park, Coughton Court and Farnborough Hall.

Upton House

Upton House. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Charlecote Park

Charlecote Park. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Coughton Court

Coughton Court. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Farnborough HallFarnborough Hall. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Worcestershire

In Worcestershire, you could try Croome, Hanbury Hall or the Clent Hills.

Croome

Croome. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Hanbury Hall

Hanbury Hall. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

There is also The Firs - Birthplace of Edward Elgar, and Greyfriars House and Garden (in Worcester).

Greyfriars Worcester

Greyfriars House and Garden in Worcester. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Staffordshire

In Staffordshire, you could try a visit to Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses.

Kinver Edge Rock Houses

Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses. Photography by Elliott Brown

Other great National Trust properties across Staffordshire include Shugborough Estate, Biddulph Grange Garden, Downs Banks, and Hawksmoor.

Shugborough

Shugborough Estate. Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Shropshire

In Shropshire, you could go to Dudmaston.

Dudmaston Estate

Dudmaston. Photography by Elliott Brown

Other great National Trust properties across Shropshire include Attingham Park, Benthall Hall, Carding Mill Valley and the Long Mynd, Sunnycroft and Wenlock Edge.

 

Herefordshire

In Herefordshire, you could visit Berrington Hall.

Berrington Hall

Berrington Hall. Photography by Elliott Brown.

Other great National Trust properties across Herefordshire include Brockhampton Estate, Croft Castle and Parkland, and The Weir Garden.

 

Project dates

02 Jan 2021 - On-going

Passions

History & heritage, Photography, Environment & green action
Travel & tourism, People & community, Green open spaces, Classic Architecture

Contact

(for further information)

Admin FreeTimePays

0121 410 5520
Admin@ FreeTimePays.com

Related posts

History & heritage
22 Feb 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

A visit to Dudmaston Estate during October 2020

The last National Trust property visit of 2020 was to Dudmaston Estate in October 2020. It's in Shropshire. A 17th Century country house (not open apart from a gallery inside). Near the village of Quatt. As before booked the tickets online for a slot. The grounds you could walk about and explore. Tea Room was open, but you had to have your tea or coffee at picnic tables outside.

Related

A visit to Dudmaston Estate during October 2020





The last National Trust property visit of 2020 was to Dudmaston Estate in October 2020. It's in Shropshire. A 17th Century country house (not open apart from a gallery inside). Near the village of Quatt. As before booked the tickets online for a slot. The grounds you could walk about and explore. Tea Room was open, but you had to have your tea or coffee at picnic tables outside.


Dudmaston

The National Trust property of Dudmaston is located near the village of Quatt in Shropshire. The country house dates to the 17th century. There is former farm buildings, some of which have been converted into a tea room and second hand book shop. There was a gallery you could visit (sanitise your hands before going in), but no photography allowed inside for copyright reasons (I think the family still live in the house). Tickets and time slot as before booked via the National Trust website (with tickets on EventBrite). If there was a gift shop, I think it was closed.

This visit was on the 18th October 2020 (so was about half a month before the second lockdown began).

 

Outbuildings at Dudmaston

The Outbuildings from the lawn. Near here was picnic tables. A queue for the toilets, sanitise your hands, wer your mask if you go in.

 

A courtyard near the Outbuildings. All the rooms here were closed. There was a one way system in place, so if you wanted, you could enter the gardens from this gate on the right.

 

The Outbuildings from the garden. Due to the one way system in place, if you went out of the garden, then back in, you had to head this way to get out.

 

This gate to the courtyard looked nice, but it was no entry this way (you could only walk through them from the other direction).

 

Private garden seen over the fence from the Kitchen Garden. Far end of the Outbuildings.


 

Dudmaston Hall

Round the back of Dudmaston Hall. A tent with National Trust volunteer, to register you before going into the exhibition / gallery. Sanitise your hands again, mask on. No photos allowed inside (tempting as it was).

 

The back of Dudmaston Hall. It is a Grade II* listed building. A Queen Anne mansion. Built of red brick with stone dressings. Was also a 19th Century office and stable wing built in the Elizabethan style. Couldn't cross the rope on the left.

 

Heading down the hill, a look at Dudmaston Hall, an impresive looking house.

 

There was this Red Ivy going down the house. A bit like those poppy art installations around Remembrance time. Some old steps with urns.

 

Another view of the house with the Red Ivy in the middle.

 

The Red Ivy looked wonderful from any angle in the parkland.

 

You could have a walk around the Dingle Walk. Eventually you would end up at the back of the Big Pool, with this wonderful picturesque view of Dudmaston Hall.

 

Parkland and gardens

A look down to the Big Pool at Dudmaston Estate.

 

Sculpture in the garden, part of a trail. Spaceframe sculpted by Anthony Twentyman during 1985.

 

Seated bench area for relaxing and looking at the views of the picturesque parkland.

 

Greylag geese flying and landing in the Big Pool.

 

The Kitchen Garden. Pumpkins in the greenhouse before Halloween.

 

Fingerpost on the Dingle Walk. Head right to the Garden, or left to the Dingle Walk.

 

Kept spotting this brick boathouse near the Big Pool, although didn't see any boats in the lake.

 

The South Lodge seen from the car as we left Dudmaston Estate. Now a private house. A Grade II listed building dating to the early 19th Century. Made of coursed sandstone rubble, with a tiled roof. The gate on exiting the estate was an automatic electric gate.

 

Hope to visit more National Trust properties in 2021, after the 3rd lockdown ends, if we are allowed to travel far again. Especially in the Spring or Summer months.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

Share  Connect with us
70 passion points
History & heritage
18 Jan 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

A visit to Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses during September 2020

On the afternoon of the 6th September 2020, we booked to go to the National Trust property and grounds of Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses. Located in Staffordshire near the village of Kinver (and not too far from Stourbridge). The Holy Austin Rock Houses were still lived in until the 1960s. Due to the pandemic, you couldn't go into the houses, just peek into them.

Related

A visit to Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses during September 2020





On the afternoon of the 6th September 2020, we booked to go to the National Trust property and grounds of Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses. Located in Staffordshire near the village of Kinver (and not too far from Stourbridge). The Holy Austin Rock Houses were still lived in until the 1960s. Due to the pandemic, you couldn't go into the houses, just peek into them.


Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses

 

A visit to Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses during September 2020. This was on the afternoon of the 6th September 2020. As before, we booked the tickets via the National Trust website (which goes onto the EventBrite app). Outside of the forest was a car park, and we passed an ice cream van. We booked in for 2:30pm. You head up to the gate, and get your ticket scanned, then proceed to walk up to the Rock Houses.

 

This National Trust site is near the village of Kinver in Staffordshire, and isn't too far from Stourbridge (around 4 miles away). There is caves in the hills, some that had houses built into them. Kinver Edge includes a heath and woodland. The National Trust was first given the estate in 1917 (around 198 acres) by the children of Thomas Grosvenor Lee (who was a Birmingham solicitor born in Kinver). The Trust acquired a further 85 acres between 1964 and 1980. In 2014 Worcestershire County Council approved the transfer of Kingsford Forest Park to the National Trust. By 2018 the parks signs were now reading National Trust Kinver Edge.

Kinver Edge was home to the last troglodyte homes in England. One of the rock houses was called Holy Austin (which you can visit). It was a hermitage until the Reformation. The Holy Austin Rock Houses were lived in until the 1960s. In normal times you can visit them, but during the summer and autumn of 2020, you could only peek into the rock houses.

Further up was a tearoom and caves. You could put your mask on, and order a coffee and cake and sit at the tables outside (this was when restrictions were eased, and before they were strengthened again).

Also located here was Nanny's Rock, which was a large cave, but it was never converted into a house. There was also Vale's Rock, which had also been known as Crow's Rock. It had been converted into houses and was last occupied in the 1960s. But due to it's dangerous condition it is out of bounds to visitors. Although you can see it from the tables and chairs of the Tearoom area.

From 1901 to 1930, it used to be possible for visitors to get the Kinver Light Railway, which connected to Birmingham's original tram network (operated from 1904 to 1953 by Birmingham Corporation Tramways). But it closed due to the popularity of the motorbus and motorcars. These days, only cars and coaches can get to Kinver Edge on Compton Road. Although I only remember parking spaces available for cars.

 

After you explore the rock houses and caves, you can head up into the Woodland and climb up to the Toposcope (if you want to).

 

After showing our tickets in the EventBrite app, we walked around to the Rock Houses. This was the first glimpse of one of them.

These are the Holy Austin Rock Houses at Kinver Edge.

Teas written on the wall of one of the Rock Houses. Probably Vale's Rock.

There is at least three levels to the Rock Houses here at Kinver Edge, along with some caves.

It wouldn't be long before I got to see this Rock House up and close, but first had to walk up some steps.

A Keep Out sign near the rocks. Not all areas are safe for the public to go.

I would get a better view of these Rock Houses once we went up the steps.

Close up to the first Rock House at the corner. The Holy Austin Rock Houses on the Lower Level.

You could peek into the Rock Houses, but a rope prevented you from entering.

A look at the objects on the table in this Rock House.

Pots and pans in this small cave.

Some Rock Houses had open windows, and you could peek into them. Looks like a bedroom.

The window of this Rock House was only slightly open.

A path goes around the Rock Houses to view some more of them. These are the Holy Austin Rock Houses. Ghost sign above barely readable.

Doors on the Rock Houses to the left were closed, so you couldn't see inside of these ones.

A look at Nanny's Rock (I think). Caves that were never converted into Rock Houses. For many years it was known as Meg-o-Fox-Hole. Someone may have died here in 1617 known as Margaret of the fox earth. Visible from the Middle Level, near tables and chairs from the Tearoom (over a fence).

When you get to the Upper Level, there is a cave you can enter. The ground is covered in sand, plus I think graffiti had been scratched into the rocks over the years. This is near the Tearoom. These are the Martindale Caves and have a 1930s appearance.

The Tearoom is on the Upper Level, to the left of the caves. Tables and chairs were outside to the right (in front of the caves). But if occupied, you had to stand up having your coffee or tea. Toilets were around to the left. This house has been restored to a Victorian appearance.

After going through the gate, exiting the Rock Houses, saw a view of the Victorian style Tearoom house. Toilets on the left. From here you can follow the paths and steps up the hill to the summit of Kinver Edge.

The Toposcope at the top of the hill on Kinver Edge. It has a map of the Midlands, which was restored by the Rotary Club of Kinver in 2014 (it was originally presented by them in 1990). Showing all the counties of the West Midlands region. Plus the major towns and cities (including Birmingham). Plus major hills such as the Lickey Hills and Clent Hills.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

Share  Connect with us
90 passion points
History & heritage
11 Jan 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Return to Packwood House during July 2020

The second National Trust we booked to go back to was Packwood House. This was near the end of July 2020. This time though, we were able to go inside of the house. But the entrance was moved to the back. And only a limited number of people inside at one time. Some parts of the garden wasn't open. But you could go all the way around the lake, and have a picnic on the lawn.

Related

Return to Packwood House during July 2020





The second National Trust we booked to go back to was Packwood House. This was near the end of July 2020. This time though, we were able to go inside of the house. But the entrance was moved to the back. And only a limited number of people inside at one time. Some parts of the garden wasn't open. But you could go all the way around the lake, and have a picnic on the lawn.


This visit to Packwood House was booked for the 20th July 2020 for around 12pm. As before you go to the National Trust website, and book the tickets in the EventBrite app. The way into the grounds from the car park had changed. You still go through the Barnyard, but a different gate was opened near the house.

You could get in the queue to go into the house, which had only just reopened (many other National Trust properties around the country, the inside of properties were not open). Use the hand sanitiser and put your face mask on. Only the ground floor was open this time. The door at the back was the way in. And you exit via the Great Hall.

One reason to go back was to go all the way around the lake. As back in 2018 they were restoring a path. This time though the path was open, and you could go through gates to the field at the back.

 

Heading from the car park to the Barnyard, saw these social distancing signs. Please keep 2 metres apart.

In the Barnyard saw Fergie the tractor. It is over 70 years old.

The Yew Garden was closed. Saw this view from the back of the house.

Queuing to go into Packwood House. There was hand sanitiser and buckets to bin your paper towels.

Bit weird having the rooms to just your household bubble. This was the Drawing Room.

In the Long Gallery. Was the odd National Trust volunteer around.

Now in the Great Hall. The long table and chairs had been moved. The door to the far right was the way back outside.

Checking out the lake, was gulls taking off and landing all the time.

View of the back of the house. This was The West Front, and last summer it was the way to queue to go into the house. First up it was time to have a sandwich on the lawn to the right.

After having a sandwich, we continued the walk. Now heading around the lake.

Quite a lot of Canada geese and ducks around as you would expect with a lake like this.

The gate from the Packwood Causeway leads into the Pool Tail Copse.

A woodland to walk through. Tall trees, lush and green in the height of summer.

There was an Orchard on the way back towards the gardens with a view of the lake.

Glimpses of the Carolean Garden. Most of the garden was roped off, and you couldn't go any further. This was one of the brick Gazebos.

Another one of the Gazebos near the South Front of the house.

A wheelbarrow and rope. You couldn't go any further in the Carolean Garden.

The East Front of Packwood House used to be the main entrance to go into the house. But not during the pandemic. This door was closed. And now this garden was the way out. The Sundial Gift Shop in the outbuildings to the right was also closed.

Some of the flowers and plants in the garden near The East Front of Packwood House.

On the way out, saw that The Barnyard Cafe was closed. But instead, you could get a coffee in the Barnyard from a trailer. The Kitchen Garden was also closed (I think, might have missed the entrance to it this time). The extensive grounds were open for people to walk around if they wanted to.

 

See also my post on the return to Baddesley Clinton in July 2020.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

Share  Connect with us
80 passion points
History & heritage
11 Jan 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Return to Baddesley Clinton during July 2020

It might seem like a while ago now, but way back in the summer of 2020, when lockdown restrictions were being eased. You could book to visit National Trust properties again. The first one we booked for was Baddesley Clinton in early July 2020. You choose a date and time in advance and a number of tickets. And you could go around the site in about 90 minutes. The house wasn't open.

Related

Return to Baddesley Clinton during July 2020





It might seem like a while ago now, but way back in the summer of 2020, when lockdown restrictions were being eased. You could book to visit National Trust properties again. The first one we booked for was Baddesley Clinton in early July 2020. You choose a date and time in advance and a number of tickets. And you could go around the site in about 90 minutes. The house wasn't open.


From March to June 2020, most National Trust properties were completely closed during the first lockdown. Then in the summer, as restrictions were being eased, they were able to reopen certain properties, but just the gardens and estate, but not the interior of the houses. The first one we booked to return to was Baddesley Clinton.

Tickets were usually released on the Friday, and were available to the Sunday, and they were going fast. We booked to go on the 6th July 2020, at around 11:30am in the morning.

There was a one way system in place. They scanned the QR code on the EventBrite app outside. The shop was reopened, but you had to wear your face mask inside. The cafe was only open to buy your coffee and anything else for takeaway, so you had to sit outside to have your drink.

 

Arriving in the car park, on the walk to the entrance. Saw these two signs. One about how to stay safe and enjoy your visit. The other about keeping 2 metres apart.

The Welcome to Baddesley Clinton sign. With (then) updated signs. Including one about the one way system.

After the tickets in the EventBrite app were scanned, could already see that part of the Courtyard was roped off.

To the back of the house in the garden, they had five pots blocking off access to that path.

This was the way to go in the garden. The box hedges were interesting to look at.

They only had maybe one or two gardeners during the first lockdown, but the plants looked impressive. This was the borders and the Glasshouse. To the left you pass through the Vegetable Garden.

View of the hall over the Wildflower Meadow. Some paths were closed to the public.

Going around The Great Pool with the usual water lilies. View to the familiar footbridge opposite.

Went around the long path. Benches were turned around. You could only turn left from here.

The bridge over the moat. The hall was closed to the public.

Nice to see Baddesley Clinton hall again. Had been inside there only once, back in June 2018.

Back through the courtyard. Another area roped off. Taped on the ground showing you which way to go.

Another lap around the grounds. Another look at the Walled Garden. Sundial in the middle.

No Entry Follow one-way system. Had to go around the lake twice.

Locked gate to the Wildflower Meadow.

A grass path roped off, no entry.

Another view of the Wildflower Meadow.

The Barn Restaurant was open for takeaway only. Payments by card or app only. All tables and chairs out of use. Socially distant queue. Had our drinks outside in the Courtyard.

The shop was open from 10am to 4:30pm. I think at this point it had only just reopened. During this time, the path to the gardens, coffee shop and toilets was the temporary way in.

A pair of hares. This used to be the Visitor Centre where you used to buy your tickets. Seen on the way out of the shop.

 

The next post will be on the Return to Packwood House. Near the end of July 2020.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

Share  Connect with us
80 passion points
History & heritage
19 Nov 2019 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

National Trust properties around the Midlands (Spring and Summer 2019)

On my National Trust membership card, been to many National Trust properties around the shire counties in the spring and summer of 2019. I was thinking about doing a post on the Cotswolds properties I went to, but here will stick to the Midlands (for now). Croome Court in Worcestershire. Canons Ashby in Northamptonshire. Farnborough Hall in Warwickshire. Berrington Hall in Herefordshire.

Related

National Trust properties around the Midlands (Spring and Summer 2019)





On my National Trust membership card, been to many National Trust properties around the shire counties in the spring and summer of 2019. I was thinking about doing a post on the Cotswolds properties I went to, but here will stick to the Midlands (for now). Croome Court in Worcestershire. Canons Ashby in Northamptonshire. Farnborough Hall in Warwickshire. Berrington Hall in Herefordshire.


Previous National Trust posts here: 

Croome Court

A visit to Croome Court during April 2019. This visit was near the end of the month. Located not far from Pershore in south Worcestershire at Croome D'Abitot. Croome Court is a mid-18th-century Neo-Palladian mansion. It is surrounded by parkland designed by Lancelot "Capability" Brown for the 6th Earl of Coventry. Some of the rooms were designed by Robert Adam. The house was built in 1751 - 52.

A look at some of the rooms inside. This was the Long Gallery. Most of the fixtures and fittings were sold in the 1940s, so most rooms are now used for temporary exhibitions. At the time was no exhibition in this room, but one was scheduled called "Can't see the trees for the wood". The interiors were done in about 1760.

This is The Golden Box in the Dining Room at Croome Court. There was A stunning display of Croome's porcelain by artist Bouke de Vries.

Back outside, and now on the path to the Chinese Bridge. Would soon cross over the Croome River.

Lakeside view of Croome Court. National Trust deckchairs to the right where you can sit and relax near the lake. Also an urn to the left of the deckchairs.

Distance from Birmingham: about 36 miles via the M5. Journey time in a car about 54 minutes. Postcode for SatNav: WR8 9DW. Rebecca Road, High Green.

Canons Ashby

On the May Day Bank Holiday Monday in early May 2019, we went to Canons Ashby House in Northamptonshire. It is a Grade I listed Elizabethan manor house located in the village of Canons Ashby. About 11 miles south of the town of Daventry. It has been owned by the National Trust since 1981, who have since restored it and done up the gardens. The house dates to the mid 16th century. It was the home of the Dryden family for many centuries.

A look inside Canons Ashby House. Photography was fine, as long as without a tripod or flash. The book room or Library. A pair of globes sitting on tables near the desk in the middle of the room.

This room was the Servants' Hall. With a long table and chairs in the middle. One of the rooms on the landing as we headed back downstairs.

Now back outside in the gardens. From the Top Terrace. Stunning flowerbeds with a multitude of colours. Spring is the perfect time to see colourful displays like this. May have been tulips out at that time of the year.

Further out in the gardens. Now on the Mulberry Lawn. The house having originally been built around 1550, was extended in 1590. It was embelished in 1632. The south front was remodelled in 1708 to 1710. The west range to the Green Court with the entrane dates to 1840.

Distance from Birmingham: about 61 miles via the M6 in a car. Should take just over an hour to get there. Postcode for SatNav: NN11 3SD. Canons Ashby, Daventry.

 

Farnborough Hall

A private residence, could not take interior photos, so only got the exteriors. Only open on Saturday and Wednesday afternoons on Bank Holidays. This visit on the way back home from Canons Ashby, during the early May Bank Holiday Monday back in May 2019. Farnborough Hall is a country house just within the border of Warwickshire, not far from Banbury (which is in Oxfordshire). It has been owned by the National Trust since 1960. Home of the Holbech family from 1684, although they first moved in around 1692. During WW1 and WW2 the hall was used as a auxiliary hospital. The main entrance into the hall was through that open door.

View of the drive a bit further back. The Clock Court is to the right. The hall is Grade I listed, while the Clock Court is Grade II listed. The way in from the car park is near the Clock Court. It was a Stableblock dating to the 18th century. Was remodelled in 1815 - 1816 by Henry Hakewill for William Holbech.

After a look around the house (I was unable to take photos inside as it was not allowed due to being a private residence). Went around the gardens having a look around.

From the lawn a bit further back looking at this side of the hall.

Further back after a walk down a path to a garden. Another look at the hall behind this field. Got to be careful of low lying tree branches, as I didn't see it one way, and hit my head (ouch). Even with a hat on (need a hard hat). Some places have low ceilings or door frames so have to be careful where I go on my travels.

Distance from Birmingham: about 48 miles along the M40 in a car. Journey would take around 52 minutes. From Canons Ashby it was about 13 miles along the A423, a journey time in the car of 26 minutes. Postcode for SatNav: . .

 

Berrington Hall

In an August 2019 visit to Berrington Hall. It is a  country house located about 3 miles north of  Leominster in Herefordshire. There was scaffolding on part of the hall due to the on going work to restore the dome. So when you head up the main staircase inside the hall, you see the scaffolding and wraps. Some light fittings had to be taken down at the time. It is a neoclassical country house building that Henry Holland designed in 1778-81 for Thomas Harley.

Heading to the main entrance for a look around the hall, through the big door, up the steps behind the four columns. Scaffolding to the right. Berrington features Capability Brown's last landscape design. You can head down the field through gates past sheep to the Berrington Hall. Best to do that after you have had a look around the hall first. Berrington has been in possession of the Cornewall family since 1386, but was taken over by the Harley family in 1775 who lived here for 95 years. In 1901 a Manchester businessman, Frederick Cawley MP, later Baron Cawley, purchased the estate. In 1957, the 3rd Lord Cawley transferred it to the Treasury, who in turn passed it onto the National Trust. Lady Cawley was allowed to live here until her death in 1978. A Grade I listed building since 1959.

A look around the interior of the hall. This was in the Library. To the left of the fireplace was a chessboard.

This is the Drawing Room. Chairs around the wall near a fireplace with a couple of mirrors in the room.

Back outside into the Courtyard. There was a tea room to the right and I think if I recall correctly the gift shop was to the left. Through the entrance way straight ahead was a former stables. One of which where you could buy an ice cream, or get a coffee. We later went to the Old Servants' Hall tea room (in the building to the right) down the basement for a coffee and slice of cake. After that, got an ice cream from the Stables cafe.

Distance from Birmingham: about 46 miles in the car taking 1 and a half hours via the A456. Postcode for the SatNav: . Leominster.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

Share  Connect with us
70 passion points
History & heritage
02 Mar 2019 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Charles II and Moseley Old Hall, a National Trust property

During the Commonwealth period, The Civil War came to an end in 1651 with the Battle of Worcester. Charles II lost that battle and went around the country (in secret) to escape to France. In the Midlands he left Worcester on the 3rd September 1651, and by the 8th September 1651 he got to Moseley Old Hall near Wolverhampton. He continued his journey south before he escaped the country!

Related

Charles II and Moseley Old Hall, a National Trust property





During the Commonwealth period, The Civil War came to an end in 1651 with the Battle of Worcester. Charles II lost that battle and went around the country (in secret) to escape to France. In the Midlands he left Worcester on the 3rd September 1651, and by the 8th September 1651 he got to Moseley Old Hall near Wolverhampton. He continued his journey south before he escaped the country!


There is a building on New Street in Worcester City Centre now named King Charles House. For many years it has been the King Charles II Restaurant. Photos below taken in September 2009, about 358 years after Charles II escaped Worcester after loosing the last battle of the Civil War in the city. King Charles House is Grade II* listed building. Including no 4 and 5 Cornmarket. And now 30 New Street. Built in 1577 for for Richard Durant and William Blagden. Restored in 1956.

Restaurant sign of the King Charles II Restaurant.

This plaque details Charles II's escape from Worcester on the 3rd September 1651.

Close up view of the restaurant. The timber framed building was rebuilt in 1670.  This was also the site of a dungeon where Judge William Berkeley kept his victims who were awaiting trial (he was born in this building in 1684).

This building round the corner is also part of the same listing as King Charles House at 30 New Street and 4 Cornmarket. In 2009 it was a dry-cleaners. Now it is a Hearing Centre. Charles II escaped from here on his long route to get out of the country. Cromwell's soldiers would have been looking for him at the time. He disguised himself as a servant. This building was originally linked to 29 New Street. An engraving of 1799 by James Ross showed that it used to be a 3-storey building. A fire in 1800 partly destroyed the timber framed building and caused a rebuilding of 30 New Street with 5 Cornmarket.

After escaping Worcester, Charles II on the run from Parliamentary soldiers, rode to White Ladies in Staffordshire, where he was disguised as a woodsman by two of the loyal Penderel brothers. The River Severn crossing was guarded, so he headed to Boscobel where he took refuge in the house and later in the 'Boscobel Oak'. He made it to Moseley Old Hall near Wolverhampton on Monday 8th September 1651.

Now a National Trust property, the house is a Grade II* listed building. The house was built in the late 16th century, originally timber framed. Brown brick with blue dressings was later added by 1870. It is near the Fordhouses area of Wolverhampton and Featherstone in South Staffordshire. The busy M54 motorway goes past the farm and estate. The front garden is now walled off, but originally the front of the house would have been open to the main road outside. Charles II arrived at what is now the King's Door round the back of the house, and was taken upstairs.

A February 2019 visit to Moseley Old Hall, during the warm sunny spell we have been having!

The King's Room on the first floor of Moseley Old Hall. It is the darkest room in the house. It was Father Huddlestone's room, close to a hiding place with a priests hole. The bed is the one that Charles II slept on (not in). The bedspread dates to the middle of the 17th century and the curtains from the 18th century! He remained clothed that night that he slept here. After some rest Charles was taken to see Mr Thomas Whitgreave the owner of the house. Seen on the guided tour of the house.

The Priest's Hole is between the King's Room and the Dressing Room. Charles II himself went into it, but he was over 6 foot tall and there was not much room in there! A trap door would close to keep the priest (or the exiled King) hidden. Not much room to get food down there either!

Mr Whitgreave's Room. The lady on the left was out guide. And let's say that the man was Mr Thomas Whitgreave!  Charles II was brought into this room to meet Mr Whitgreave and was introduced to his mother Dame Alice. Charles watched from the window of the small study as the defeated Royalist army made their way back up to Scotland. Best not for Charles to look out the window, or someone outside might recognise him!

A portrait of King Charles II in the Entrance Hall. There was many portraits of him around the house. Probably placed there by the National Trust. Charles spent several hours in the priest hole when Parliamentary soldiers marched up to the front door accusing Thomas of fighting at Worcester for the Royalists. He told them he was too ill to travel, they accepted his story and left, never entering the house or finding Charles!

After he was moved again, he went to Bentley Hall near Walsall, the home of the Lane family. A portrait of Jane Lane hangs at Moseley Old Hall. He was then taken to Bristol disguised as a servant. But couldn't get a boat to France from there. He then headed south towards Bridport in Dorset.

Charles II arrived in Bridport, Dorset on the 23rd September 1651. He stayed at what was the Old George Inn on East Street in Bridport. Seen in May 2012. Now a Cancer Research UK charity shop. A Grade II* listed building. The former public house dates to the 16th and 17th centuries. Was altered in the early 19th century with Stucco. By 1788 it had become Dr Robert's Apothecary Shop. It was probably still a pharmacy by the 1950s to the 1970s. Not sure how long Cancer Research UK has been here, but must be more than a decade?

Dr Giles Roberts opened a pharmacy at 9 East Street in Bridport in 1804. The building was previously The George Inn. Closer detail of the sign near the top of the building about Charles II's stay here on the 23rd September 1651.

After the pharmacy closed, the contents was moved to the Bridport Museum. There is a display in one of the rooms of Dr Robert's Apothecary Shop with a dummy of Dr Roberts on the left. And a cabinet that says "Dispensing Department". This visit May 2012. All contents of the Bridport Museum remain their copyright. So no commercial use of the below photo allowed.

After leaving Bridport, Charles II continued his journey to escape to exile in France. He finally got a boat from Shoreham. He would have to wait until 1660 to be restored to the throne! After the death of Cromwell and the fall of the Commonwealth!

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Share  Connect with us
70 passion points
History & heritage
20 Feb 2019 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

More National Trust properties around the West Midlands Region

Here we take look at Upton House in Warwickshire, Hanbury Hall in Worcestershire, Shugborough Hall in Staffordshire and Wightwick Manor in Wolverhampton.

All National Trust properties that you can visit from the spring onwards. They might be open all year around, but I think it's best to visit in the spring, summer or early autumn. Especially for the gardens and grounds.

Related

More National Trust properties around the West Midlands Region





Here we take look at Upton House in Warwickshire, Hanbury Hall in Worcestershire, Shugborough Hall in Staffordshire and Wightwick Manor in Wolverhampton.

All National Trust properties that you can visit from the spring onwards. They might be open all year around, but I think it's best to visit in the spring, summer or early autumn. Especially for the gardens and grounds.


For my previous National Trusts posts follow these links:

National Trust properties in Birmingham: Back to Backs and The Roundhouse

National Trust properties in Warwickshire

Now on to this selection of National Trust properties!

Upton House from a visit during May 2016.

This visit to Upton House in 2016 was while the house and grounds was set up for an event called "Banking for Victory! A Country House at War". Like it could have been in the 1940s during World War II. At this time it was used as a bank.

It is a country house located northwest of Banbury in Oxfordshire in the areas of Ratley and Upton in Warwickshire. It was built in 1695 for Sir Rushout Cullen, Bt and might have been designed by one of the Smiths of Warwick. Possible alterations in 1710 and again in 1735 for William Bumstead. Remodelled in 1927 to 1929 by Percy Morley Horder for Walter Samuel, 2nd Viscount Bearsted. It's a Grade II* listed building. Built of Ironstone ashlar.

 

This view at Upton House during May 2016 from the rear lawn area. This was a big lawned area, and at the far right side was an outdoor swimming pool! It leads down to the gardens on the lower part of the grounds. The house has a 16 window range. From here it looks quite wide! There is a small terraced garden just in front of the back of the house. Bunting from the houses time as representing as if it was during wartime. Inside there was more examples of what the house may have looked like during the 1940s.

A look around the inside of the house. This view from a balcony on the first floor looking down at the library. In wartime most of the furniture would have been under white sheets. In 2016 they were projecting a film onto the sheet between the pair of portraits. "The pre-war heyday of the country house party never returned."

Another room, I think the lounge or living room. How it could have looked during the 1930s or 1940s. A pair of comfortable chairs with a fire in the middle. I assume that there must have been a wireless (radio) in this room? Also old books on the shelves. Was also a desk near the window, which I assume is where Lord Bearsted may have worked, or read his newspaper?

If you fancy a bite of lunch and a hot drink, then the Wartime Pavilion Restaurant is the place to come! That was temporarily renamed to "Wartime" in 2016 while Upton House was in it's 1940s wartime representation mode. Now just the Pavilion Restaurant again. Other place for tea is Iris's Tea Room and the Tea Window.

Hanbury Hall from a visit during June 2018.

During this visit in the summer of 2018, they had Falconry on display in the grounds. We got a guided tour of the house, but only on the ground floor. After I went back outside, I didn't go back in to have a look around upstairs.

It is a large stately home built around 1701 in the Queen Anne style by William Rudhall for Thomas Vernon. Red brick in Flemish bond with ashlar dressings. It is a Grade I listed building. Located in Hanbury, Worcestershire. The nearest town is Droitwich Spa. It has been a part of the National Trust since around 1953. The last baron Sir George Vernon took his own life here in 1940. And their were no further heirs and the Baronetcy which became extinct.

If you are a bit early for your guided tour of Hanbury Hall, then head towards the Long Gallery. This view from The Sunken Parterre. Inside was a small art gallery featuring the art of local artists. The building is a Grade II* listed building. Built in 1701 and had alterations in the mid 19th century. Red brick in Flemish bond; hipped plain tiled roof. In the Queen Anne style. Inside are two Jacobean overmantels and also frames a funerary hatchment with the three Vernon wheatsheaves. Prince of Wales feathers inside believed to have originally come from Tickenhill House, Bewdley.

The Orangery at Hanbury Hall. Also known now as The Orangery & Mushroom House. It is a Grade II* listed building. Built around 1750. Red brick in Flemish bond with ashlar dressings and hipped plain tiled roof behind parapet. There was orange trees outside. And a large field. Which was behing used by many families on the day of our visit. One area was roped off for a falconry display (I think we kept missing it). Although I did see the handler with a bald eagle on his special glove!

The interior of the house on the ground floor. Seen during a guided tour. This was the Great Hall. We were taken in and out of the various rooms. The main entrance to the house lets you into this room. Above the fireplace on the left was a marble bust of Thomas Vernon. Behind (not in this photo below) was the staircase with the Life of Achilles wall paintings. Unfortunately I did not go upstairs as it was not part of the tour, and I didn't later return to go back inside of the house.

The Dining Room at Hanbury Hall. Quite grand. Family portraits all round the room and a painted ceiling above. I believe that the papers on the table was representing a Suffragette meeting in 1918 (as 2018 was the 100th anniversary of Women gaining the vote).

Shugborough Hall from a visit during August 2008.

I hadn't fully taken up photography in 2008, and started using my then compact camera in 2007 - 2008 when we went to various stately homes or on holiday to various places.

The hall is located in Great Haywood, Staffordshire, not far from Cannock Chase. It was the seat of the Earls of Lichfield and the estate was in the possession of the Anson family for three centuries. When the 4th Earl of Lichfield died in 1960, the National Trust was allocated the hall and it was leased to Staffordshire County Council. Management returned to the National Trust in 2016. The hall is a Grade I listed building. Was built from about 1695. Was enlarged from 1760 to 1770. Samuel Wyatt remodelled it in the late 18th century. More specifically it is in Colwich, Stafford.

The rear view of Shugborough Hall seen in the summer of 2008. I recall that we did go inside of the house, but I only got a handful of photos from outside of the house and around the grounds. Some steps down from the French windows that Patrick Anson, 5th Earl of Lichfield (1939-2005) might have enjoyed the view of his garden. Also known as Patrick Lichfield he was known as a photographer and he took official photos of the Royal Family. He lived at Shugborough Hall after his grandfather's death, but he gave the estate to the National Trust in 1960 in lieu of death duties.

The Doric Temple at Shugborough Hall. It is a Grade I listed building and was designed by "Athenian" Stuart, circa 1760. It was identical to one that he had built at Hagley. Made of stone and plastered brick. With 6 Doric columns. It has been recently restored (the listing was from 1968 so perhaps restored in the late 1960s?).

A Chinese style bridge. Grade I listed as the Garden Bridge. Probably dates to the late 18th century. It is on the River Sow. The Chinese House is next to it (not in the photo below). That was erected by Admiral Anson circa 1747 after his voyage round the world.

Outbuildings at Shugborough Hall, not far from the Vegetable patch. Which is a Grade II listed building dating to the early 19th century, although I'm not sure the building in the photo is part of the same listing. This might be the Orangery. I've not been back in over 10 and a half years now. Seems like that there is now the Mansion Tea Room somewhere around this location. Also known as the Shugborough Hall Cafe.

Wightwick Manor during a visit in April 2018.

On this visit we became members of the National Trust. Eventually received a card that can get scanned whenever you visit any National Trust property around the UK.

It is a Victorian manor house located on the Wightwick Bank, Wolverhampton. Built in 1887, the National Trust has owned it since 1937. The house was built by Edward Ould for Theodore Mander, of the Mander family. They were successful late 19th century industialists who owned the company Mander Brothers. The house was only 50 years old when the National Trust acquired it from Geoffrey Mander (a Liberal MP who was son of the original owner). A Grade I listed building. Interiors by William Morris and and C.E. Kempe. Built of brick with ashlar dressings and timber
framing. The house was built in the Aesthetic movement and Arts and Crafts movement. And the house is half-timbered, Mock Tudor style.

A look around the house at Wightwick Manor. The house is very much as the Mander family left it in 1937 and the National Trust has preserved it. A look at the library. There is a desk close to the window on the left with papers and books probably used by Mr Mander. Stained glass window is in this room and in other rooms. Some parts were done up in 2018 to represent the Suffragette movement who finally gained the vote in 1918!

View of The Great Parlour from the Gallery above. Plenty of period seating inside. A lady (a National Trust volunteer) seen playing the piano. While a man sitting on the bench takes a rest (I think he had his dog with him). A stags head seen at the far end of the room above the entrance to the room.

Some of the buildings on the estate. This is now the Malthouse Gallery. Head up the steps to see the art inside. A Grade II* listed building. It was the Old Malt House. At the time of listing was used as an Education Centre. Was built either in the late 16th or early 17th century. It was restored for Theodore Mander in the late 19th century. Brick with red brick dressings; tile roof. The De Morgan collection is inside on the first floor of the malthouse. Various ceramics and paintings around the room. Before the Mander's bought the buildings and land, it was the site of a farm. The Hinckes family owned it from 1815 but leased it to the Moore's until the 1880's. The Malthouse was originally used for malting barley and brewing.

The gift shop and plant sales are in this building (with the plants available to pick up from outside). This was the Old Manor House and it is a Grade II* listed building. Built for the Wightwick family in the late 16th or early 17th century. Theodore Mander has it restored in the late 19th century. Roughcast with brick dressings; tile roof with brick stacks. There is a coat of arms above the entrance to the gift shop. Also on one side is a sundial that resembles a black lion. The Old Manor House is a short distance away from the manor house that the Mander family had built in the late 19th century.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

 

Share  Connect with us
80 passion points