National Trust – Dyrham Park
Ancient parkland, 17th-century house and garden on the western edge of the Cotswolds.
Discover a honey-coloured Baroque house, formal garden and dramatic parkland on the western edge of the Cotswolds. Dyrham Park, situated off the A46 near Bath, is nestled in a 270-acre ancient parkland filled with magnificent trees and breathtaking views reaching right over to Wales.
Inside the baroque-style house, visitors can get a flavour of 17th-century life with a fine collection of blue and white Dutch ceramics, art and furniture. The house has recently been brought to life thanks to extensive conservation, interpretation and redecoration work to reflect the style and look of the 1690s. This was when the house as it stands today was created by William Blathwayt and many of the objects and art within it were his. An exhibition explores that era, putting into context the role of Blathwayt, who was Secretary at War to King William III and Auditor General of Plantation Revenues, and how it helped shape modern Britain.
Outside you can see the formality of 17th-century style planting in long borders which contrasts with the sumptuous planting in the pool gardens and informal pear orchards filled with trees and wildflowers. A peaceful shady wooded area called the terraces, perfect for a pause and a quiet moment, links the garden to the extensive parkland.
In the parkland, there are various walking routes to explore and a recently revamped play area at Old Lodge complete with brand new café and toilets, as well as picnic tables. The play area includes play kitchens, balance beams, tractors to sit on, log tunnels and climbing frames.
During school holidays, there are seasonally-themed activities and trails for families, and nature tots sessions run every Tuesday morning during term time for pre-school children. During the summer months, we host outdoor theatre and 2023 is no exception with performances planned in July and August.
Garden and parkland tours run most days led by specialist volunteer guides or if you prefer to explore independently, there are lots of paths and self-led trails.
Dyrham Park’s main tea-room is down by the house and garden with indoor and outdoor seating. Takeaway kiosks are also open on busy days.
Visitors can pick up gifts, plants, books and cards from the well-stocked National Trust shop or have a look at what’s available in the second-hand bookshop open daily.