What's on this August at Fountains Abbey

Swans swimming, bees buzzing, rabbits running, Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal is alive with activity this summer and not just for the animals! Whether it’s practicing that singing voice at St Mary’s Church with The Big Sing, or learning fascinating facts about the estate on one of Mike’s nature walks, there is plenty to join in on this summer.

Watch the wildlife

Kate, one of Fountains Abbey's fabulous gardeners, loves hearing the sound of the river by the abbey on a fresh summer morning. Don't let the peace and quiet fool you though, there's lots happening above and beneath the surface. See if you can spot trout living in the river or watch the blue common damselfly flit between wildflowers.

What's on this month


Buzzing Bees

The bees were a very important part of medieval life here at Fountains Abbey. The monks would have made 'skeps', straw or wicker beehives, to keep them so that they could produce honey and wax. These would have had a variety of uses including candles, mead and a sweetener for food as they wouldn't have had sugar.

We don't keep bees anymore, but we hope the wildflowers that grow here in the estate catch their eye as they are an important part of our ecosystem. Find out more about bees from the Harrogate & Ripon Beekeepers who will be on site for two weekends in August.

Dancing Deer

If you’ve taken a stroll through Studley Royal deer park you’ll probably have noticed it’s home to three breeds of deer. The red deer aren’t just the largest in the park, they’re the largest land-mammal in the UK.  If you can’t tell by the size, these deer are recognisable by their reddish-brown coats and their branched antlers.

The fallow deer were introduced to the UK during the Norman Conquest but didn’t arrive at Studley Royal until the end of the 1600s. The all white deer you can spot will be from the fallow family, although most normally have pale brown coats with white spots.

Finally the manchurian sika can be spotted by their black and white heart shaped tails. Originally from the far east, these are the smallest breed in the park and often the most timid. To learn more about them all, join one of our deer watch walks and learn how to track them.

A father and daughters pond dipping in one of the moon ponds

Pond Life

The moon ponds in Studley Royal water gardens are home to lots of creatures. You can discover water beetles, pond skaters, newts and lesser water boatman in the ponds this summer. Just bring your curious minds along to one of the pond dipping sessions and we'll provide everything else you need to explore the hidden depths of Studley Royal.

Fun with folly!

It's not just wildlife living in the water gardens this summer. Discover folly! 2018 with the whole family as you follow the 'Art in the Garden' trail. Whether it's picnicing at Polly or dancing under the cloud, fill your day with fun as you explore the four artworks re-imagining the lost follies.


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