Wednesday, 10 May, 2017
2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
This is a special ‘Members only’ event when we have sole access to the house.
Leith Hill Place is an elegant 17th-century property, which was added to and improved in the 18th century by General John Folliot. The estate grew to become a landscape of natural splendour including a ha-ha, lime avenue and extensive tree planting.
Some of the country’s most influential families have lived at Leith Hill Place. Their lineage includes the names of Wedgwood and Vaughan Williams, who are now woven deeply into the place’s history. A close relative of the Wedgwood family, the English naturalist Charles Darwin, frequently stayed at Leith Hill Place. He conducted research around the estate and his ‘worm-stone’ still sits within the grounds today.
Ralph Vaughan Williams, the English composer, was the last member of the family to own Leith Hill Place. He gave it to the National Trust in 1944. Since then the house has been rented out and more recently used as a boarding house for a boys’ school. You can still see some graffiti in the cellar. This is only the fourth year the house has been open to public and it has a quiet and relaxing atmosphere.
Our visit will consist of free-flow viewing of rooms on the ground and first floors of the property and a 35 minute sound-scape tour of the attic. The latter will be in groups of 15 people, but there will be sufficient time for all of our party to visit. The attic is accessed by steep stairs and may not be suitable for those with mobility difficulties. They will be able to hear the soundscape on the ground floor.
Last year the house was fortunate to receive the piano on which Ralph Vaughan Williams composed most of his music and we will be lucky to hear it played for us. There will also be an exhibition of Wedgwood china.
The property has a volunteer baker baking delicious cakes and scones on the premises and the cost of the event includes a slice of cake or scone with a cup of tea or coffee.
Toilet facilities are available. Dogs on leads are welcome in some rooms.
Parking is available in the National Trust car park at £3.50. NT members displaying a 2017 sticker park free. Those with mobility difficulties may park by the house. Parking and venue details will be sent with the booking confirmation.
This is an exclusive SHS party visit and booking is essential. The cost for the visit will be £7.00. Please bring your NT membership cards on the day. Non NT members will need to pay the admission fee of £5 on the day on entry.
If you are interested in joining us, please let us know before 1st May. Enclose your e-mail address OR a stamped addressed envelope for confirmation of your booking. For further details or enquiries, please phone 07530 949302 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that the Surrey Hills Society and its Event partners accept no responsibility for any loss, damage or personal injury during events. Participants are requested to wear appropriate clothing and footwear and take due care and attention.
The Society uses members’ photographs on social media and on our website. If you are not happy to have your photo taken during this event, please notify us in writing prior to the event and make the event organiser aware on the day.