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Ellen Terry's early 16th-century house and cottage

Built in the early 16th-century when Smallhythe was a thriving shipbuilding port, Smallhythe Place was purchased by renowned Victorian actress Ellen Terry in 1899.

Her daughter Edith Craig set up the museum in 1929 which is home to a fascinating personal and theatrical collection which highlights Ellen Terry's extraordinary career and unconventional personal life.

Smallhythe Place includes a cottage garden and a charming 17th-century thatched Barn Theatre which provides an opportunity to attend a show with a regular programme of talks and shows.

On your visit, take a look at our information on the shipbuilding in the area and be sure to speak to our knowledgeable guides who can tell you more about the colourful history.

New open days in 2015

Don't miss the chance to take a look at our theatre

When we re-open on 4 March we'll have made a few changes. The first one will be that our open days will be Wednesdays - Sundays and we will be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, but we'll still be open on bank holidays.

Keep an eye out for our new costume days and chances to see some of our collection up close too. 

We can't wait to see you

A small house big on charm

The Barn Theatre at Smallhythe Place, the home of actress Ellen Terry

The former home of Victorian actress Dame Ellen Terry, is steeped in history, ranging from its earlier shipbuilding days to a working farm and then more recently a home to theatre. It's got a cottage garden, orchard and nuttery to boot. Enjoy a cup of tea overlooking the fields beyond and absorb that atmosphere of a small but charming place. 

Smallhythe Place has many hidden secrets and stories so pop by and see us to find out lots more.

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