Visitors are being given a new chance to walk through history at one of the region’s most historic stately homes.
Weston Park – the stately home on the Shropshire\Staffordshire border – has announced a new series of guided walks and tours offering visitors an expert look behind the scenes in both the house and gardens.
Head Gardener Martin Gee will bring more than 200 years of family history to three guided walks through the stunning Weston Park grounds – beginning with a Bluebell walk on Sunday May 7.
Martin, whose family have lived and worked on the estate since 1802, will then guide visitors on the Fabulous Follies Walk on June 4 and the Autumn Walk on October 29.
Each walk will last for around two hours and take in all the glory of Capability Brown’s stunning creation, from the rare Pleasure Ground of Temple Wood to the wide expansive views from the Knoll Tower.
Martin will explain why these frivolous follies were built, the purpose and history of a pleasure ground, how he and his team look after the gardens and how they have changed and developed over the centuries.
Details of the walks, which cost £10 per person when booked online and £15 on the day.
And a series of tours of the spectacular house itself have also been unveiled – with a suitably regal theme to reflect this Coronation year.
The Behind the Scenes Tours will give visitors a peak behind the ropes to learn some of the royal secrets of the Bradford family, including who was Master of the Horse to Queen Victoria, which royal honeymooned at Weston and why Queen Mary was such a frequent house guest.
Starting on June 11 at 2pm each tour is conducted by Weston’s knowledgeable volunteer guides and explores areas of the house that are not normally open to visitors.
Gareth Williams, Curator & Head of Learning, said: “We are not ashamed to say that you can’t see a preserved Victorian kitchen with rows of gleaming copper pans as Weston is still very much a working house. However, we do have a fabulous roll call of Royal connections starting with Civil War loyalty to the crown all the way through to HRH the Duke of Gloucester recently opening the Lady Anne Memorial Garden.
“Our collections tell a fascinating story of the Bradford family and their court connections. Our volunteer guides will take visitors upstairs, downstairs and into rooms that are not on the typical visitor route.”
Behind the Scenes Tours take place on June 11, June 25, July 9, July 23 and August 6. Tours cost £20 per person and include admission to the House, Park and Gardens.
All proceeds from the walks and tours go directly to supporting the work of the Weston Park Foundation.
Tickets for both tours can be found on the Weston Park website.