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A Truly Regal and Relaxing Experience
Chatsworth House (Bakerwell)
Member Name: fionamcg
Chatsworth House (Bakerwell)
Advantages: wonderful building, great events, delicious food
Disadvantages: a little expensive, but worth it
Chatsworth House in Derbyshire is one of the most popular stately homes in the country, and I think deservedly so. Aside from the majestic building and exceptionally well kept grounds, the farm shops and children's play areas including a farm yard, there is a strong sense of openness and welcoming for all guests as the Duke of Devonshire, following his father's footsteps, has kept a huge portion of the house open to the public.
Chatsworth House has many events which attract visitors including horse trials, classic motor shows, proms in the summer and the house is spectacularly dressed at Christmas. The Chatsworth gardens also are a major feature with a progressive greenhouse, a fantastic maze and the famous 300 year old cascading fountain which is great fun to walk up because it is made from various sized steps, but be careful, its really slippy!
I do love to visit the House and the staff create different displays, the current one is Chatsworth in the movies with original costumes, photos, writings and props from films including Pride and Prejudice (the BBC version and the one starring Keira Knightley), The Duchess (again starring Keira Knightley) and soon to be released horror Wolman (starring Benicio del Toro and Anthony Hopkins). I thoroughly enjoyed this display as the main feature was the Duchess and included original diary entries made by Georgiana which were censored by Bess of Hardwick and dresses worn by Keira Knightley in the film.
I also love to visit Chatsworth to eat the delicious food which is all organically produced on site, especially the ice cream after a steak sandwich, just scrummy!! The gardens are great to take a picnic too, but you don't always have to pay and sit within the grounds, but you can sit just outside on the sprawling land and sit by the river, just next to the House and eat your picnic there. This is hugely popular on sunny days and many families come to jump in and out of the river on a hot day and enjoy lunch in the shade of the trees, a grand setting to say the least! You can also go to the farm shop just a short drive from the House to pick up homemade jams and beautiful cuts of meat; they aren't the cheapest, but worth every penny.
The entry prices and times are:
Open every day until 23 December
The house, garden, farmyard, gift shops and restaurant are open until 23 December 2009
Park open all year, no charge
All day carpark charge at Calton Lees and the house car parks is only £2. Parking for visitors with an Estate Pass; Friends of Chatsworth Gold Card; and disabled badges is free of charge
11am to 5:30pm, last admission 4:30pm
11am to 6pm, last admission 5pm
Farmyard and adventure playground
10:30am to 5:30pm, last admission 4:30pm
The shops in the Stableyard are open from 10:30am to 5:30pm and the Orangery shop is open from 11am to 5:30pm
Carriage House restaurant and Stables grill and drinks
10:15am to 5pm. Hot food served at lunchtime
The Cavendish Rooms
10am to 4:30pm. Hot food served at lunchtime
Farm shop in Pilsley (1½ miles)
Monday to Saturday, 9am to 5:30pm
Sunday, 11am to 5pm
Summary: A beautiful stately home in the middle of the Peak District, a great day out.
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