Winter talks give insight into Chatsworth

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The Duke and Duchess of Devonshire will share some of their favourite treasures and places around their home at Chatsworth, as part of a series of winter talks.

Among the subjects covered are some of the more unusual objects and places included in the Chatsworth Estate, as well as the history and stories behind them. Running until March 10, the winter talks also feature a fresh selection of expert speakers covering a diverse range of interests, from the challenges of managing the garden and waterways, to an insider’s view of working at Chatsworth as a housekeeper and a look at 250 years of life below stairs.

On January 26, Head of gardens and landscape Steve Porter, will give a talk entitled ‘Managing a modern garden’.

Steve has got to deal with the impact of more than 500,000 visitors every year while managing and expanding the plant collection, working with external consultants to develop new areas, using contractors to maintain and improve the fabric and historic features, as well as guiding an expanding team of gardeners, trainees and volunteers. This talk is an opportunity to learn more about how it all works and find out about plans to develop the garden.

On January 27, the collections team will discuss 250 years of stories from the servants hall. This talk will tell the stories of servants that have been found in the archives – from butlers, housekeepers, cooks, cleaners, footmen, gardeners, and many more.

On February 2 Lord Burlington will give a talk on shaping a greener Chatsworth, on February 10 Shenagh Firth will give a talk entitled ‘Duchess Georgiana’, and on March 2 The Duke and Duchess of Devonshire will talk about their home.

Finally, on March 10, head housekeeper Christine Robinson will give a talk entitled ‘The Housekeeper’s tips, tales and tipples’.

All the talks can be booked online. Visit www.chatsworth.org for more information.