Tolkien-inspired 'hidden realm' at the Vyne


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Our play area is one of a kind; inspired by fantasy and legend, it will set children's imagination running wild.

Reclaimed site

For many years, the Hidden Realm site was an abandoned area of walled garden. But specialist playscape makers, Green Play Project, have designed and created a unique fantasy landscape for kids, making use of recycled, natural materials where possible, including larch grown on our own estate.

The first of its kind

The Hidden Realm adventure play area – the first of its kind in the country – has been designed to promote creative and interactive play: to stimulate children’s imaginations within a naturalistic environment, where they can ‘run wild’, but within the safe confines of a walled garden.

Inspired by an ancient ring

The inspiration behind the Hidden Realm is an ancient gold ring that we have on display, thought by many to be the ring that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien to write The Hobbit. Elements of jungle, mountain and stream, based on Tolkien’s Middle-Earth landscapes, are cleverly intertwined into the play area’s many features.

A hit with local children

'The children roared around, crawling through the tunnels, sliding down the grassy banks, and shinning up and down the fireman’s pole at the centre of the fort. They became completely absorbed in controlling the water supply from the stream to the sandpit, and creating dams; they would have been there for hours if we hadn’t finally herded them into the tea room, so that the adults could warm up!' - Dave Green (Vyne Property Manager 2013)

We wish to make clear that the Tolkien Estate (which includes the Tolkien Trust, a registered charity) is not associated with our exhibition and does not endorse the possibility of a connection between the Vyne Ring and the writings of JRR Tolkien.