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Quirky 18th-century house with fascinating interior decoration and collections

This unique sixteen-sided house was described by Lucinda Lambton as having 'a magical strangeness that one might dream of only as a child'.

It was built for two spinster cousins, Jane and Mary Parminter, on their return from a grand tour of Europe in the late 18th century. It contains many objects and mementoes of their travels.

The extraordinary interior decoration includes a feather frieze, gathered from native game birds and chickens, laboriously stuck down with isinglass.

There is also a fragile shell-encrusted gallery, said to contain nearly 25,000 shells, which can be viewed in its entirety using a touch screen 360 degree virtual tour.

Wildflower walks

22 May, 11.30am & 2.30pm

Explore the wonderful wildflower meadow with a knowledgeable guide and discover some of the species that grow there.

Booking essential.

Times and seasons

8 - 21 May

Well known local artist John Onley, looks at the changing seasons on urban and rural landscapes.  Every fortnight you can catch a new exhibition guaranteeing no visit will ever be the same as the last.

While you are here

  • Ask for a ticket for a guided tour of the house
  • Dogs on leads are welcome. Take yours along the Parminter Walk
  • Treat yourself to a hot drink or lunch in the tea-room
  • Browse through our wide range of secondhand books and jigsaw puzzles
  • Visit Point in View church, resting place of Jane and Mary Parminter
  • Say hello to our jolly rescue hens. Follow the link to find out why feathers are important to us...

Take a look at our unusual collections

There is nowhere quite like A la Ronde. The unusual shaped house cares for thousands of extraordinary artefacts.

Many of these objects can now be viewed online.

Be prepared to be amazed

A Gothic fantasy

A Gothic fantasy

Shells, feathers, cut paper, lichen, galss, mica, pottery, stones, bones and paint adorn this gorgeous room. Suffering from decay and poor restoration visitors can now explore it using a clever system of cameras.