Chatsworth's attractions for families on a summer staycation
Chatsworth is offering a packed programme of events to entertain families during their summer staycation.
Arts and culture, history and horticulture, picnics and plays are among the attractions at one of the best-loved stately homes in the country.
Outdoor film screenings of Pride & Prejudice, which was shot at Chatsworth, Rocketman, The Greatest Showman Sing-Along and Star Wars: A New Hope run from August 19 to 22.
Bring a picnic and a chair and watch The Lord Chamberlain’s Men perform Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth on August 4. This outdoor production includes Elizabethan costumes, music and dance.
Staying in the garden, there will be a chance to join the in-house experts on a walking tour to explore one of Britain’s biggest private garden transformations on August 17, September 21 and October 5. Visitors will discover the new areas designed by Tom Stuart-Smith, now known as Arcadia, which is in full bloom for the first time this summer and includes the creation of meadow-like glades across 25 acres connected by woodland walks. There’s also a remodelled Rock Garden, new borders surrounding the Maze, a revamping of the Ravine, as well as Dan Pearson’s redeveloped Trout Stream and Jack Pond.
The 105-acre garden with its water features is a favourite with children, whether it’s the monumental Emperor Fountain, sending its plume over the banks of the Canal Pond, or the water splashing down the stone steps of the Cascade, that play every day from 10.30am to 4.15pm. Everyone is welcome to bring along well-behaved dogs on leads and pack a picnic too.
Over in the Chatsworth Farmyard and Adventure Playground, there will be three sessions available every day to book for two and a half hour visits, at 9.30am, 12.15pm and 3pm. It’s a chance for younger visitors to see a working farmyard up close, and meet the resident horses, donkeys, sheep, pygmy goats and guinea pigs, as well as seeing the cows being milked.
Life Stories, which is running in Chatsworth House until October 3, explores characters such as Bess of Hardwick with her necklace of 1000 pearls, the artists Angela Conner and Elisabeth Frink, and historic family figures such as Christian Bruce, wife of the 2nd Earl of Devonshire, and the 5th Duke of Devonshire, by pairing them with objects that tell us unfamiliar stories about their lives.
A new Flying Childers Outdoor Bar, which opened in the garden this month, offers a lovely spot to pause and refresh while drinking in the beautiful landscape. Located near the Vinery, it serves local beers and spirits alongside great wines curated at Chatsworth and a light Derbyshire inspired snack menu featuring cured meats and seasonal marinated vegetables.
While Chatsworth welcomes more people back to the estate following the easing of restrictions, the health and wellbeing of visitors and colleagues remains its top priority.
Key measures include requiring visitors to wear a face covering in the house and encouraging their use in all other indoor areas, such as the restaurants and gift shops; advance booking required for visits to the house, garden and farmyard to manage capacity.
For more information, visit www.chatsworth.org