A medieval world in the great hall
Step back in time as you explore the ‘medieval’ hall, complete with minstrels' gallery. From the gallery get a closer look at the elaborate ceiling patterns or admire the chivalrous banners and shields. Can you identify the stone carvings, portraying aspects of medieval life, including the king, farmers and guards?
Books galore in the library
There’s plenty to see in the library, from the intricately decorated ceiling to the shelves full of rare books. Sitting on bookshelves and hiding in the alcoves are some unusual Martinware ceramics, including the grotesque spiny beast and peculiar birds.
Unwind in the boudoir
A softer and more feminine room, the boudoir was the personal retreat for the lady of the house. The ceiling is beautifully painted with the signs of the zodiac. Look out for the French music box and silver ink stand made for the Great Exhibition. From the window, enjoy fantastic views of the parkland and beyond.
Vice and virtue in the billiard room
Look up at the seven deadly sins looming over the billiard table; can you identify them all? From the violent wolf to the greedy pig, these imaginative stone carvings are watched over by the wise owl.
The sound of music in the drawing room
Why not play a tune on the grand piano or relax on a sofa and soak up the atmosphere of Knightshayes. Admire the elaborate ceiling, now restored to its colourful glory after being covered for nearly a century. Don’t miss the large wooden cabinet containing a rare collection of local ceramics.
The dining room
Take a look at the table and sideboard, laid out for a family breakfast. Above, the ceiling is inscribed with poetry from Robert Burns.
Precious treasures in the morning room
A luxurious room richly decorated in red velvet and full of unusual treasures. In the alcoves are items of Italian renaissance earthenware, which have featured in many international exhibitions. The room is also home to Sir John’s beloved art collection.
Great views from the bedroom
From this large Edwardian bedroom you can view the Heathcoat Amory’s lace making factory. Have a look at the wedding dress owned by a former factory worker with the veil gifted from the factory as a wedding present.
Quirks and curiosities
There's plenty to see, from looming grotesques and gargoyles to the ‘medieval’ great hall with minstrels’ gallery. Look out for the imaginative stone carvings of the seven deadly sins and aspects of medieval life, designed by the architect William Burges.
The grand staircase is engraved with heraldic dogs and leads up to rooms of various styles, from Victorian gothic to Edwardian. The elaborate ceiling decorations tell of the troubled birth of Knightshayes and its restoration.