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Country Houses of Northamptonshire and Lincolnshire

3 nights starting from
£729

  • Recently re-opened Apethorpe Palace

  • Magnificent Burghley House

  • Rockingham Castle

Join Nicholas Merchant, West Yorkshire representative of the Art Fund, who will draw on his expertise in antiques to deliver a convivial weekend exploring some of the great country houses of the East Midlands, complete with illustrative and illuminating lectures. Based on lovely Rutland Water in England's smallest county, whose motto "multum in parvo" (much in little) sums up its appeal, this delightful tour visits some of the East Midlands finest country houses, including Apethorpe Palace, Boughton House, Burghley House, Deene Park House, Grimsthorpe Castle and more.

Available Departures

From

22 - July - 2018 Limited Availability Travel Info Please Call

Provisional Timings

ITINERARY

Day 1: Arrive independently at Barnsdale Lodge from 15.30 and enjoy a cream tea in the hotel’s conservatory. This evening there will be a welcome glass of prosecco, private dinner with wine and an introductory talk by Nicholas Merchant: ‘More Houses of Northamptonshire and Lincolnshire’.

Day 2: Burghley House and Grimsthorpe Castle.
Our first visit is to the magnificent Burghley House where there will be a welcome talk by Jon Culverhouse, followed by a free-flow visit of the house. A light lunch will be included here, and this afternoon it is on to Grimsthorpe Castle where we will have a guided tour. The castle has been in the Willoughby de Eresby family for 500 years and some parts of it date back to the 13th century. Evening talk from Nicholas Merchant: ‘A French Palace in the English Countryside’ followed by dinner at the hotel.

Day 3: Rockingham Castle and Deene Park.
A guided tour of Rockingham Castle, standing high on a hill overlooking the expanse of the Welland Valley. Having been in the same family for 450 years, the house contains fine Elizabethan portraits, contemporary paintings, and in the garden ‘the elephant hedge’. This afternoon light lunch and tour of Deene Park, an interesting house occupied by the Brundenell family since 1514. The Brudenell family developed Deene Park from a medieval manor into a Tudor and Georgian mansion. Dinner at the hotel.

Day 4: Boughton House and Apethorpe Palace.
Morning guided tour of Boughton House, the great 18th century Versailles-inspired mansion of the Dukes of Buccleuch. After a light lunch here (included), we visit Apethorpe Palace for a guided tour. A 16th century house of unparalleled importance as a royal home (to James I principally), it has been dramatically saved from dereliction by the intervention of English Heritage and its sale to a French count. Return to the hotel for approximately 18.00.

NB: Exact order of excursions may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion.

Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 25 passengers.

INCLUDED

  • Three nights' bed and breakfast at the three-star Barnsdale Lodge Hotel, Exton, on the edge of Rutland Water, based on shared occupancy of twin/double room
  • Cream tea on arrival
  • Welcome reception
  • Three dinners with wine at the hotel
  • Three light lunches included
  • Tours and entrance fees
  • Full coach touring itinerary 
  • Talk and accompanied visits with Nicholas Merchant 

NOT INCLUDED

  • Transport to the hotel is not included
  • Single room supplement 
  • Extra nights on half board basis 
  • Holiday insurance 
  • Meals other than those stated 
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls etc 
  • Porterage and gratuities

HOTELS

Barnsdale Lodge, Rutland Water
Converted from an historic farmhouse that has been in the owner's family since 1760, the three-star Barnsdale Lodge offers comfortable accommodation, excellent food and a warm, friendly welcome. All bedrooms are en-suite and individually furnished with TV, telephone, tea/coffee making facilities, hairdryer and have views of the surrounding countryside or the picturesque courtyard. Facilities at the hotel include a restaurant where dinner will be served each evening. Complimentary car parking is available at the hotel.

Barnsdale Lodge Website

MORE INFO - Please click here to see full details of this tour

Please note that all our UK tours start and finish at the relevant hotel.  

You can normally check in from 3pm onwards but hotels will always be happy to store your luggage if you arrive earlier in the day. 

For full details of how to get to the hotel, directions and the nearest train station, please click on the hotel website or call our office for details. These will also be sent automatically with your confirmation. 

The welcome reception and first evening dinner / talk will commence at about 7pm - full details will be sent with your joining instructions about 10 days prior to the arrival date. 

We love to receive feedback from our customers. Their views help us to keep improving the ours we offer. If you have been on this tour and would like to submit a review, please log in to our client area here and fill in the short form.

Recent Reviews

 

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Overall Impression

As ever, Nicholas Merchant proved an excellent guide, his knowledge is formidable and he has such a friendly manner as well as good leadership skills. The coach drivers took great care. Next time I would avoid Apethorpe: English Heritage are not very helpful and there were distasteful Jimmy Saville connections.

Review by Pounder who travelled 20-August-2017


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A delightful trip with the added bonus of good weather and good company. Nicholas was an amusing and informative guide, and I shall certainly travel with company again. Thank you.

Review by Mrs Gillian Van Der Steen who travelled 16-July-2017


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Never got to see Belton House -Nat.Trust offiicals not very visitor friendly - most rude ... It later seems that just 11 of our party of 22 had a tour - they did not see Silver.... We stayed an extra night and were told 8 people were staying to dinner - the hotel reserved a table for 8 accordingly. on going down for dinner the reserved table was full --- 12 persons had stayed - as luck would have it the restaurant was not full and the extra 4 - including we two - were able to dine.

Review by Mrs Dorrie Collins who travelled 11-June-2017


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Nicholas Merchant was an excellent guide throughout the tour. Interesting selection of country houses but visit to Belton house disappointing entirely due to lack of communication by National Trust about the house opening hours

Review by Mr William Joscelyne who travelled 11-June-2017


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We liked the hotel - the food was good and the provision of wine with it was much appreciated. The light lunches provided were very suitable and Nicholas Merchant looked after us very well as usual. An enjoyable holiday.

Review by Dr G Stephenson who travelled 11-June-2017


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National Trust administration/contact on the day needs improvement !. Insufficient places were provided by the hotel to allow all those who stayed for the extra day to sit together at dinner

Review by Mr Gordon Chard who travelled 11-June-2017


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Just one minor blemish on Sunday, there was a long wait between starter and main course even though menu choices had been made when checking in. Otherwise the usual high TE standards - our first UK and fifth in total tour .

Review by Mr Francis Lucraft who travelled 21-August-2016


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Some guides in great houses get carried away by their enthusiasm to tell one about every picture, ancestor and marriage. Greater freedom would be good in houses where there is information or a steward in each or most rooms

Review by Mr W Bingham who travelled 12-June-2016


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Excellent hotel, tour guide very knowledgeable which made the visits to the various houses all the more interesting.

Review by Mrs Rosemary Beal who travelled 12-June-2016


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Nicholas Merchant was the ideal person for the holiday, plenty of information,polite, knowledgeable and enthusiastic. He made the holiday a first class experience. We were very placed on this holiday.

Review by Mr Stephen Smith who travelled 23-August-2015


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Overall Impression

I would say Very Good for sightseeing tours and overall impression if given the option. The size of the group was just right for travel house tours and getting to know fellow guests. I am looking at the brochure for other tours.

Review by Mrs Patricia Barr who travelled 23-August-2015


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A brilliant Holliday many thanks a point to note is the hotel uses some of their ground floor rooms for clients with dogs so animals may have slept in the bedroom Our room definitely had a doggy smell which is not very nice I think you should be made aware of this practice

Review by Mr David Young who travelled 23-August-2015


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All went very smoothly and satisfactorily.

Review by Mrs J Stone who travelled 19-July-2015


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Overall Impression

I asked when booking, and again before we went if the hotel had a lift. I was told it had, but there was no lift there. Fortunately the hotel were able to change us to a ground floor room. They also had to alter dining arrangements, so that we could eat downstairs.

Review by Mrs Isabel Lofts who travelled 19-July-2015


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Overall Impression

communication from the tour office to the hotel and tour leader seemed poor and the fact that I booked in for an accessible room with a walk in shower and to put my mobility scooter onto the coach to use when possible was not passed on. All sorted amicably in the end!

Review by Mrs Diana Powell who travelled 14-June-2015


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Accommodation was very good

Review by Mr Warwick Bayley who travelled 14-June-2015


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Another well organised tour. Excellent food. Nicholas as usual a delight. We both enjoyed it. Many thanks.

Review by Mr James Croall who travelled 14-June-2015


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Very enjoyable and interesting short break in a part of the country I didn't know beforehand.

Review by Mrs Diana Amies who travelled 14-June-2015


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Hotel bathroom cleaning before our arrival was not adequate. Hotel meals had very inadequate vegetables.

Review by Mr David Winter who travelled 14-June-2015


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Review by Mr James Oldroyd who travelled 14-June-2015


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Please note that the bus broke down twice en route to us in the morning. As it happened this didn't really matter but it was unimpressive. Otherwise tours and the hotel were excellent.

Review by Mr Peter Holland who travelled 08-June-2014


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Review by Dr G Stephenson who travelled 08-June-2014


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We very much enjoyed the holiday. Our one adverse comment relates to the quality of the food at diner, the main courses were poor. On our last night after the tour had finished we eat in the hotel restaurant and the food was very good there.

Review by Mr Graham Blackwell who travelled 08-June-2014


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An excellent few days in the lovely countryside of England. The only slight disappointment was the quality of the food. I am not particularly fussy but the choice of evening meal was poor and the meal itself was of a poor standard. A pity as otherwise everything would have been perfect!

Review by Mrs B Eales who travelled 08-June-2014

Travel Editions feedback:

Thank you for your comments but frustrated to read about the quality of the food which we will be taking up with the hotel. A constant quality control is required with our UK hotels with regards to food, compared to our Europe tours....


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