Claydon House

The west front of the house

We like to bring history to life at Claydon House. From our friendly volunteers to our hands on approach in many of our stunning 18th century rooms, we want our visitors to enjoy experiencing life in the house as the Verney family would have done.

Architectural past

Claydon house was originally built with a domed rotunda attached to the north side of the present west wing and an identical wing containing a vast ballroom beyond that. The rotunda and wing containing the ballroom were demolished in 1791.
 

Upscaling the house

The present Claydon House is almost entirely 18th century and was built on a grand scale by Ralph 2nd Earl Verney. Lord Verney wanted his house to rival nearby Stowe in magnificence.
 

Hands on

You can visit our collection of replica costumes and try them on yourself or find a scrapbook to read. There are places where you can sit and take your time to look at the internal decorations of the house or children can lie on Florence Nightingale's bed.
 
Find out more about Florence Nightingale.
 

No velvet ropes here

Make yourself comfortable on a sofa and marvel at the intricacies of the exuberant 18th century carved interiors. We've taken down the ropes in many of the rooms so you can enjoy the experience just as our 18th century ancestors would have.
 

Our museum room

We have many artefacts on display in the museum room on the first floor. These include some ancient silk slippers, a regimental suit, a number of stuffed birds, watercolours and various objects from the Crimean wars. In addition we are very lucky to have a remarkably preserved Javanese gamelan, which is a set of musical instruments that include some glockenspiel type instruments and a set of suspended gongs. Played together as a group, the gamelan brings communities together for religious, spiritual and political music and dancing.
 

Conservation at Claydon

We have a dedicated team of volunteer conservationists who work closely with the conservation house manager. Their main goal is to preserve the structure and integrity of Claydon, from the wonderful marquetry on the main staircase through to the collection of ancient texts in the library and everything you see in between.
 

Download the Florence Nightingale bio

Learn more about Florence Nightingale and the time she spent at Claydon House.