Five reasons to visit Waddesdon this summer

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Five reasons to visit Waddesdon this summer Chris Lacey (c) National Trust

With the easing of restrictions and the start of the summer holidays, Waddesdon – the Rothschild House & Gardens in Buckinghamshire – is looking forward to welcoming visitors to enjoy temporary exhibitions, the French interiors and the landscaped gardens, as well as a programme of activities taking place throughout the summer.

1. Explore rooms that have been closed since 2019        

From Wednesday 28 July, the Wine Cellars (which contain 15,000 bottle of Rothschild wine), and the Rothschild Treasury (which houses over 300 objects made from rare and precious material, and tells the story of generations of Rothschild collecting) will re-open, for the first time since 2019.

2. Enjoy a series of outdoor events

From music and theatre performances to outdoor cinema, there’s something for everyone to enjoy in the Waddesdon grounds this summer.

Colourscape (Wed 28 July–Sun 8 Aug) lands on the Waddesdon lawns once again, inviting visitors into a world of intense light, colour and music as they explore 56 interlinking chambers. Oudoor theatre performances will also offer family-friendly entertainment throughout the summer months, and in August visitors can enjoy a free festival showcasing some of the best children’s writers and illustrators (Thur 19 – Sun 22 Aug). Later in the season the Luna Cinema will return (Thur 9, Fri 10, Sat 11 & Sun 12 Sept), with four films shown on the big screen set against the backdrop of the House.

3. Indulge in delicious food and drink

As well as offering cake and cups of tea at takeaway outlets around the site, and Waddesdon’s famous afternoon teas in the Manor Restaurant, this summer visitors can also choose from a mouthwatering selection of food and drink events. Pick up a Deli Board or bring along a picnic and while away a summer’s evening enjoying a live jazz performance in the beautiful surroundings of Waddesdon’s gardens at Jazz at the Manor (Fri 20 Aug), or for a slightly spicier affair, turn up the heat at Waddesdon’s annual Chilli Fest, which is guaranteed to bring you the hottest local artisan products as well as foods and gifts from some of the nation’s best loved independent traders (Fri 3, Sat 4 & Sun 5 Sept). English Sparkling Wine month will also be celebrated throughout August, with pop up wine tastings and indulgent evening dinners taking place across the month.

4. Enjoy a picnic in the grounds

Pre-order one of Waddesdon’s luxurious picnics and lay out a blanket alongside a wildflower meadow. Waddesdon has been reducing the areas that are usually intensively mowed so that wildflowers can bloom and supply pollinators with nectar and pollen. A wild cornfield mix in the Upper Deer Pen, with cornflowers, orange corn marigolds and pink corncockle, will look its best in June and July, while the walk from the car park will take you through a perennial wall flower meadow that will bloom from summer through to autumn.

5. Art

The Rothschilds were the greatest collectors of the 19th century, and Waddesdon’s internationally-renowned collection is testament to this.

Gustave Moreau, Allégorie de la fable, 1879 (detail).

Gustave Moreau, Allégorie de la fable, 1879 (detail).

Today, temporary exhibitions offer visitors an opportunity to see contemporary and … art from around the world. This summer, Gustave Moreau: The Fables aims to display some of the most important works the French symbolist painter ever made, unseen in public for over a century. Meanwhile, in the Coach House Gallery world-renowned fashion photographer, Nick Knight’s giant photographic images of roses will encourage visitors to view this classic subject I an entirely new way.

The safety of staff and visitors continues to be Waddesdon’s priority, so we are maintaining measures that put safety first:

  • To guarantee entry, please book online and in advance.
  • Though we will not be enforcing social distancing, we ask visitors to respect one another. We will manage capacity carefully so visitors can maintain their preferred distance from others.
  • We are maintaining the one-way route around the Manor.
  • Our staff will be wearing face coverings for their safety and the safety of others, and we encourage visitors to do the same.
  • In line with Government guidelines, we encourage visitors to register their visit with NHS Test and Trace upon arrival by scanning the QR code.
  • There will continue to be plenty of hand sanitiser available around the site.
  • We will start gradually increasing capacity within the Manor. This will be under continual review, informed by visitor feedback and safety monitoring.

Visit for more details


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