Ann Evans will be blowing away those winter blues with an early spring walk around one of
Warwickshire most stunning stately homes.
It may be a grey, damp, cold January at the moment, but the buds are already appearing on
trees and shrubs, and spring flowers are beginning to poke their green tips through the frosty
earth. If you can’t wait to enjoy our English springtime, then make a note in your diaries to
head along to one of Warwickshire’s finest stately homes, Ragley Hall, and enjoy a
wonderful winter garden walk.
On Saturday and Sunday, 16th and 17th February Ragley Hall will be opening its gates for
guests to explore their magnificent Winter Gardens. With a multitude of snowdrop varieties
in full bloom, this will be a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the beauty of Ragley’s gardens
and parkland in a season where the hall has historically rarely opened to the public.
Ragley boasts 10 spectacular acres of Capability Brown gardens plus sprawling surrounding
parkland, countryside and woodlands. Mark Morrell, Head Gardener at Ragley, commented,
“2019 sees my third year at Ragley hosting the Winter Garden Walks and it has easily
become one of my favourite open weekends each year. Ragley and its gardens are spectacular
in all seasons and it’s a fantastic feeling to be able to open the gates to our guests and share in
its beauty.”
Visitors can also discover the long history associated with Ragley Hall by taking a guided
tour of the magnificent house. It’s thought that Ragley Castle once stood where the rose
gardens are today. During the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, Sir John Conway travelled from
Conway Castle in Wales to marry the heiress to Arrow – a village close to Ragley. In 1680
Sir John’s grandson the first Earl of Conway engaged Robert Hooke, a notable architect and scientist, and a contemporary of Christopher Wren to design this Palladian mansion. It took until the 18th century to complete the stunning Ragley Hall.
If you book a tour of the house over the weekend of 16th and 17th February, you will be able
to delve into Ragley’s fine history. Their team of passionate guides will be on hand to share
the family history as well as relay fascinating anecdotes and events from the nine generations
who have called Ragley their home.
Today Ragley Hall is the home of the 9th Marquess and Marchioness of Hertford and their
family. They see themselves as caretakers of this beautiful piece of British history, and work
hard at making it an outstanding place for the public to see and enjoy, as well as ensuring it
continues as a thriving country estate with a successful farm, butchers, sawmill and
properties.
Tickets are £5.00 for adults and free for accompanied children under the age of 12. Ticket
price includes entry into Ragley’s Winter Gardens. Additional tours of the hall’s state rooms
are available on the day at £3.00 per person. Tours available at half past the hour, every hour,
between 11:30am – 3:30pm.
For more information about Ragley Hall and Gardens visit: www.ragley.co.uk