Plan your day at Hardwick

Enjoy an Autumn day out at Hardwick exploring the Elizabethan Hall, gardens and parkland.

The Elizabethan processional and the ground floor of the Hall are open, 11am - 3.30pm, every day. From Monday 13th September as part of the Year of Treasures, explore the stories behind the five remarkable treasures of Hardwick. 

Please note: if you would like to visit Stainsby Mill on your visit, this is by pre-booking only a seperate Mill ticket. Click here to book your ticket.

Opening Times

  • Hardwick Hall (Elizabethan floor and ground floor): 11am - 3.30pm
  • Shop: 10.30am - 5pm
  • Restaurant: 9.00am - 5pm
  • Garden: 9.00am - 5pm

The Old Hall (run by English Heritage) is closed. please see the English Heritage website for further details.

Hardwick Hall

Hardwick Hall is an Elizabethan masterpiece situated in Derbyshire, surrounded by 2000 acres of parkland. It was the formidable 'Bess of Hardwick' who created Hardwick Hall in the late 16th Century and since then her descendants, farmers, gardeners, builders, decorators, embroiderers and craftsmen of all kinds have contributed and made Hardwick their creation.

Autumn in the gardens

The fruiting orchard is at its best, mulberries are starting to ripen and the Yew hedges are getting an annual trim. In the West Court, September brings out the best of some of the tender perennials, keep an lookout for Argyranthemum ‘Jamaica Primrose’, Salvia ‘Indigo Spires’, Penstemons and Dahlias including ‘Doris day’, ‘Auroras Kiss’, ‘David Howard’ and ‘Bishop of Llandaff’

Our Head Gardener's Seasonal Tips

You don’t have to have a nursery to grow new plants. Lots of plants will produce new roots if cuttings are placed in water on a sunny window sill. Pot them up after rooting and they will be fine to plant after the frosts have gone next year.

Don’t be in a rush to cut down your borders this autumn. The structure of your plants can look as interesting as the flowers especially when we have frost and snow.

Don’t forget, you don’t have to have a huge space to garden especially if you want to grow fruit and vegetables. A raised bed, window box or some big pots can be enough to grow a surprisingly large amount of soft fruit, salad crops and even runner beans and potatoes. Start planning now for next year. Every garden centre or DIY store will have a wide range of containers and all the seeds you need.

Autumn is the best time to do repairs to your lawns. Re-turfing bare areas is the best way as it gives instant effect and it is not as expensive as you would think.

Autumn crab apples in the Hardwick Orchard
Autumn crab apples
Autumn crab apples in the Hardwick Orchard

A walk in Hardwick's parkland

With beautiful views, abundant wildlife and a variety of walking paths to take, the parkland is a great place to explore at this time of year.

Fieldfares and redwings can be spotted on the estate, there will be lots of good funghi around during the autumn and early winter, fly agarics can be seen under the birch trees around Millers pond. Waxcaps can be seen in the parkland and the usual show of bracket fungus on beech trees in Lady Spencer's Wood and chicken-in-the-woods on dead or dying hardwood trees.

What are the Ranger team up to this Autumn?

Planting 389 trees on Blingsby fields (first part of the main drive) as part of the stewardship scheme from November along with replacing any failed trees, installing the remaining tree guards and applying barbed wire to them to protect the trees from cattle.

Woodland management is a core piece of work across the estate and the team will be removing invasive species such as snowberry, as well as controlling rhododendron and carrying our tree surveys. 

Tasty treats from the restaurant

After a long walk or explore, take a break and enjoy a treat from the restaurant including hot and cold drinks, main meals, light snacks, freshly baked cakes and scones and ice-creams for those rare warm Autumn days.

Enjoy a tasty treat with a view outside the Hardwick restaurant
Enjoy a tasty treat with a view outside the Hardwick restaurant
Enjoy a tasty treat with a view outside the Hardwick restaurant

Facilities and access

Mobility parking is in the main car park, 100 yards from visitor reception. After arrival, accessible toilets can be found in the Stableyard. Wheelchair access to the gardens and Lady Spencer's Walk. We provide wheelchair and tramper hire.