Secrets of the National Trust with Alan Titchmarsh at Chartwell

Alan Titchmarsh with Katherine Carter, Curator at Chartwell, standing in Churchill's studio with a backdrop of Churchill paintings

On a snowy day in January 2019, Alan Titchmarsh went behind the scenes at Chartwell for a fourth series of Secrets of the National Trust.

At Chartwell, the former home of Winston Churchill, Alan explored the spaces where the iconic leader made some of his most important decisions and pursued his personal passions for painting and bricklaying. 

Beating the crowds

Over August and the school summer holidays we normally receive our largest amount of visitors for the year. We frequently sell out of house tickets, even on weekdays, and our car park does fill up. A house ticket is the only way of entering the house on your visit.

If Secrets of the National Trust has inspired you to visit we would recommend waiting until September to ensure you have the best possible experience and you can fully appreciate the secrets that Alan Titchmarsh explored. Those secrets will still be there in September!

If an August visit is unavoidable then we would certainly suggest visiting on weekdays, excluding Bank Holidays, and booking your timed ticket to the house in advance.

Tickets can be booked 24 hours in advance. Some tickets are available to collect on the day but these do sell out quickly or you may find you have a considerable wait to enter the house.

Churchill's bedroom

In the episode Alan stepped inside Chartwell's inner sanctum - Churchill's bedroom.

Guided by Allen Packwood, Director of the Churchill Archives Centre, Alan Titchmarsh discovered more about Churchill's routine from his late night working, his afternoon naps and how secretaries would sit in his room taking notes.

Churchill's bedroom is only open by tour and you can find out more below.

The studio

Alan also explored Churchill's studio on his visit to Chartwell.

With the help of Curator Katherine Carter, Alan found out more about Churchill's passion for painting, how he developed his skills learning from artists such as Sir John Lavery and also saw just how important Chartwell was to Churchill.

Churchill and bricklaying

Claimed to have laid 200 bricks a day, Alan learned more about Churchill's interest in bricklaying. Indeed some of the walls of Chartwell were built by Churchill and you can see the plaque in the Walled Garden of Chartwell.

Busy Days at Chartwell