Explore Calke Abbey, the un-stately home

Sir Vauncey's bedroom at Calke Abbey, Midlands

When the house was handed to the National Trust in 1985, many of its rooms had been adandoned for decades and were in a state of rapid decline. We've decided not to restore these rooms, but rather preserve them as they were found.

A time capsule

Calke Abbey is the house where time stood still, vividly portraying a period in the twentieth century when many country houses did not survive to tell their story.

Rather than restoring Calke to its former glory, we've undertaken necessary repairs to halt the decay of the house and its collections. As you wander through the mansion, you'll discover abandoned rooms, peeling wallpaper and a vast collection of strange and unique objects – presented exactly as we found them.

Discover a sense of abandonment in the Servant's Hall
The Servant's Hall at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire
Discover a sense of abandonment in the Servant's Hall

A house of hidden stories

Discover deep and complex stories of a family who amassed a huge collection of hidden treasures. Learn the history of these fascinating and often strange possessions, which includes stuffed animals, family portraits and the stunning state bed.

Begin your journey in the entrance hall and explore the well-kept rooms at the front of the house, including the grand dining room, the library and the saloon, where you'll find an assortment of fascinating objects.

As you make your way towards the servants' quarters, experience the sense of abandonment in the school room and Sir Vauncey's childhood bedroom. Discover hidden stories and forgotten spaces in this unique house.

Broken chairs are still upturned in the kitchen at Calke Abbey
Areas of the dilapidated kitchen at National Trust Calke Abbey, Derbyshire
Broken chairs are still upturned in the kitchen at Calke Abbey

Winter visits to the un-stately home

The house is now closed for the winter, but behind closed doors, the house team are busy with the big winter clean. We'll be cleaning and inspecting every room on the visitor route, from the collections themselves to the walls and carpets around them. You can find out more using the links below.

This year, you'll have the opportunity to sneak behind closed doors on a VIP tour of the house. Calke Unlocked is a fast-paced, slightly bonkers experience – not to be missed! Book your tour now to avoid being left out. 

Your winter visits to Calke Abbey help us to preserve the un-stately home for many generations to come. Thank you.