Temple Newsam House
Step inside the Tudor-Jacobean Temple Newsam Estate and discover a stately slice of British History; as you stroll through gracious landscaped gardens, marvel at the magnificent manor house, encounter some of Europe’s rarest farm animals, and acquaint yourself with a priceless collection of fine and decorative art! All of which can be discovered just minutes away from 42 the Calls.
Noble Births, Royal Seizures & Glorious £40 Gardens
Temple Newsam House first came to be in around 1500 after being raised by Lord Darcy of Darcy. But, as was the precarious nature of the 16th century, his tenancy came to a crashing halt in 1537 when Henry VIII ordered his beheading over the Pilgrimage of Grace uprising.
Having seized Darcy’s property (and his head), ownership of the estate was then awarded to Margaret Douglas, mother of the notorious Lord Darnley - later husband to Mary, Queen of Scots - who was born within the very walls of Temple Newsam! Their marriage, however, was not to be a blissful one despite the birth of son, James. This was made evidently clear just eight months after the arrival of (the future) King James I, when Lord Darnley was found strangled in his bed; allegedly at the hands of his wife.
The much documented demise of Mary followed, after which Elizabeth I - as her father had done before her - seized Temple Newsam; which would languish in a state of neglect until 1622. That was until Arthur Ingram, Third Viscount of Irvine, purchased the estate - establishing the basis of the house as we know it today.
The Ninth Viscount of Irvine (Charles Ingram) however, would be responsible for the most marked embellishments to Temple Newsam. With the help of his (very rich) wife, Frances Shepheard, he entrusted the services of ‘England’s Greatest Gardener’ - Capability Brown - to create a serene landscape reminiscent of his beloved Claude Lorrain. The result? The glorious gardens which remain perfectly intact today, for which Brown was paid just £40! ‘Bargain’ I hear you cry! But perhaps not, seeing as £40 in 1771 was worth the equivalent of £70,000 in 2017!
The Iconic Collections of Temple Newsam
While the gardens by Capability Brown can themselves be deemed a veritable work of art; a venture inside the grandiose walls of Temple Newsam House will acquaint you with one of the most admired collections of fine and decorative art in Britain.
Sitting proudly at the centre of Temple Newsam’s fine art assemblage are numbering works by the Old Masters - spanning British, Dutch, Flemish, French, German and Italian Schools - with climaxes arriving in the preeminent landscapes of Jacob van Ruisdael, and seminal portraits by Henry Raeburn and Sir Joshua Reynolds.
Decorative art also abounds amid the Tudor-Jacobean interiors, embodied nowhere more so than in stunning assortments of furniture by Thomas Chippendale. Such was the prestige of Britain’s foremost furniture maker, his designs can fetch into the millions at auction. But fortunately, his beautiful drawers, tables, cabinets and various carvings on display at Temple Newsam are staying firmly put!
Rounding off the decorative art collection, is everything from antique weaponry, to historic jewellery; exquisite examples of furniture by James Pascall, to a Chinese Room filled with eclectic oriental decorations! Gatherings of gold, silver, ormolu and marble antiques are also copious across the forty renovated rooms - with the complete works of Temple Newsam ultimately hailed as one of national importance.
Home Farm at Temple Newsam
Kids, big kids, and animal lovers alike will be overjoyed by a visit to Home Farm - where some of the rarest breeds of farmyard animals can be found within the award winning conservation farm!
Among the numbering child-friendly animals are various varieties of cattle, pig, goat, sheep, duck and all your farmyard favourites. But beyond just admiring these beautiful creatures, visitors are also invited to get hands on with petting and feeding sessions. On any given day, a stroll along the charming cobbled lanes of Home Farm will also acquaint you with exciting interactive workshops - which have in the past included activities like blacksmithing and buttermaking. A huge outdoor play area is also on hand should kids (or adults!) wish to let off some steam.
Throughout the year, Temple Newsam also opens its doors for a series of annual events - so keep your eyes peeled for Lord Darnley and the Fair Devil of Scotland, Halloween Spooktacular, Let’s Rock Leeds, Cocoon in the Park and Chocolates for Christmas!
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