Our work

All in a day's work

Risk assessments, project timelines, research, reports, client briefs, costings and funding, interpretation and engagement... is all part of our work to care for this special place, and that's what we're all about.

In 1986 we became a World Heritage Site and, together with our property business plan, our World Heritage Site management plan forms the guidelines for our conservation work on site. 

If you join as a member, have coffee in our restaurant or get your Christmas gifts in our shop, you're supporting our work and helping us look after this beautiful place for everyone to enjoy.

This summer you might have seen work taking place to remove silt from half moon reservoir, you can read more about the half moon reservoir project here.

Current projects: Half moon reservoir

A 'digger-boat' will churn up the silt to make it easier to pump out © Aimee Rawson

A 'digger-boat' will churn up the silt to make it easier to pump out

We're using new technology to pump the silt out of the reservoir and moon ponds of the water garden rather than traditional dredging and work is nearly complete. Find out more here... 

Current projects: Bosquet restoration

Over 300 yew trees have been planted by our gardeners and volunteers © Aimee Rawson

Over 300 yew trees have been planted by our gardeners and volunteers

We've completed the planting of 300 specially grown Yew trees in the water garden and this year we'll be planting the interior of these formal garden features called 'bosquets'. This is part of a 30-year plan to bring the garden back to its 1781 heyday.

Current projects: Views and vistas

Breath-taking views around every corner © Aimee Rawson

Breath-taking views around every corner

We’ve been working in woodland areas to clear shrubs that have grown up and covered some of our best views. We’re also clearing the clifftop walk viewpoints and views from tent hill so you can see what 18th century visitors would have seen.

Current projects: Fountains Hall plantin...

Spring blossom to delight outside Fountains Hall © Aimee Rawson

Spring blossom to delight outside Fountains Hall

Our research has shown that unlike other formal gardens of its' time, there was a softer side to the planting at Fountains Hall so we're re-introducing plants such as hollyhocks, rosemary, lavender as well as mulberry, medlar and pear trees.

Previous conservation projects

Upper canal

The flood water ripped the sides of the canal out © National Trust

Flood damage to the upper canal wall has been repaired with a new concrete base, complete with rough surfacing to help native crayfish populations.

Bathing house

The bathing house is shown in the centre of this section of an 1838 map © National Trust

In summer 2013 we excavated the site of the Bathing House, with a week of live archaeology.

Bird hide

Generous donations and volunteer support made it possible to build the hide © National Trust

Generous donations and volunteer support made it possible to build the hide. You can find it nestled in the trees near the visitor centre.

Studley Lake

The Lake looks great now that itâ¿¿s been drained and restored © National Trust

We undertook a two-year project to clear a large silt island in the lake which was affecting water quality and flow, causing erosion and spoiling the design of the original garden.

Ice houses

The ice houses were quite a walk from Studley Royal House © National Trust

Our work on the 18th century icehouses in the deer park has now come to a close and renovation work means they are now open to visitors.

Future projects: Mallory painting

This portrait is a rare touch-point with the people who once lived here © Robert Thrift

This mysterious painting is the only image we have of the family who once lived here. We hope to conserve the painting to display to visitors.

Future projects: Chinese garden

One of our conservation projects this year is to repair these pillars © National Trust

Restoring some lost features in the Seven Bridges area of the estate will help us to tell the story of Aislabie's lost Chinese garden.

Future projects: Statue painting

Elegant statues and classical follies © Andrew Butler

We're currently looking into how the statues used to presented in this historic garden. There's some evidence that they were once painted white...


Enjoy curling up in front of the open fire

As well as day-to-day repairs and work on visitor facilities, there's also work to keep the holiday cottages looking great.

Following the refurbishment of How Hill Cottages, we've repaired the chimney stack and installed a new wood-burning stove in Fountains Cottage.

Energy efficiency

We hope to reduce our energy use significantly

We're always working hard to reduce our energy usage.

A number of energy-efficiency projects have been completed recently including new roof insulation for the Visitor Centre and last year's big story - the installation of a ground source heat pump.

Join in

Our archaeology monitoring volunteers are working hard collecting data

We couldn't carry out this work without the support of our volunteers who give their time and energies. If you'd like to join in, just get in touch.

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