Hidden gems in Surrey

Those hints of autumn bring out the sense of adventure in us all. Try something new this season with a visit to some of Surrey's best kept secrets: Leith Hill Place, Shalford Mill, The Homewood and Oakhurst Cottage.

A view of Leith Hill Place

Leith Hill Place 

Teetering on the edge of Leith Hill, this mansion house enjoys stunning views and its history is steeped in famous families like the Vaughan Williams, Wedgwoods and Darwins. There are new exhibitions this year including the family collection of rare Wedgwood ceramics and an artist's residency by Louise Scillitoe-Brown. Live music and theatre performances make for a creative summer at this special place.

The exterior of the mill sitting astride the Tillingbourne river

Shalford Mill 

Shalford Mill, on the Tillingbourne stream, is evocative of a bygone era, showing a vital part of village life. It was saved by the mysterious Ferguson's Gang, who have quite a story. There's all sorts of marvellous milling machinery inside.

The Homewood, Surrey

The Homewood 

Hidden in a leafy corner of Esher is The Homewood, former residence of architect Patrick Gwynne. This modernist gem has reopened its doors in April for weekly tours of the house, with its remarkable interior collection and the curious, heather-strewn landscape garden.

The 16th century cottage in Hambledon, Surrey

Oakhurst Cottage 

See a whole other side of Surrey at this sixteenth-century labourer's cottage in the charming village of Hambledon. This remarkable relic of English rural life is full to the brim with tales.