The country house at Hatchlands Park was built in the 1750s for Georgian naval hero, Admiral Edward Boscawen and his wife Fanny, and is now home to tenant Alec Cobbe and his remarkable collection of paintings, fine furniture and musical instruments played by famous composers including JC Bach, Chopin and Elgar.
There are more than 400 acres of sweeping parklands – designed in part by Humphry Repton, who is often regarded as the successor to Capability Brown – and you’ll find waymarked walks throughout the park and Wizard Wix’s Willow Warren, a natural adventure area with balance beams, wigwams and totem poles. It’s one of the largest country estates in the area.
The west lawn in front of the house and the wider parkland are open year-round – and there’s plenty enjoy whatever the season. In the spring, the bluebells in the ancient woodland are not to be missed, as are the swathes of daffodils that burst up under the magnificent London plane tree.
The house, the wildflower meadow and parterre gardens are open to visitors six afternoons a week (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays, from 12pm until 4pm) between March and October.
Inside the house you can explore six beautifully restored rooms, richly decorated with a family feel. There’s a chance to see some of Robert Adam’s earliest work, plus wonderful collections of paintings and a world class group of musical instruments brought together by the tenant Alec Cobbe.
There’s are two cafés – the Kitchen Café at the top of the cobbled courtyard in spaces originally occupied by the house kitchens, and the Coach House Café in the lower courtyard, where the carriages were once kept – where you can get snacks, fresh cakes and bakes, hot sausage rolls, pasties and toasted sourdough sandwiches and a full range of hot and cold drinks.