Summer highlights at Nostell

Whether you're looking for family adventures indoors and out, or a chance to relax in the colourful gardens, make memories to cherish at Wakefield's treasure house this summer.

Children enjoying water play at Nostell, near Wakefield

Summer holidays at Nostell 

Become a wildlife hero, get messy in the mud kitchen and make a masterpiece inspired by Chippendale's mystical mirror with our jam-packed holiday family programme.

Herbaceous border in Nostell's Kitchen Garden

Colour and scent  

Nostell's landscape gardens and Pleasure Grounds are alive with wildlife and beautiful blooms. Discover bright herbaceous borders, lakeside views and paths that wind under woodland canopies, the perfect shelter from sunshine and showers.

Ho-ho bird detail on the Chippendale pier glass at Nostell

Interior Worlds: Behind the Glass 

Thomas Chippendale created a world of interiors for Nostell. He designed the State Apartment in the 'chinoiserie' Chinese-inspired style, complete with mythical birds, beasts and flowers. These exotic spaces offer a window into the 18th century world of fashion, innovation and social ambition.

Chippendale pier glass at Nostell

Peer behind the pier glass 

We made some fascinating discoveries hiding behind Chippendale's pier glass mirror when it was taken off the wall for the first time in living memory. See for yourself before it's returned to the State Bedroom in September.

Family cycles through parkland at Nostell

Get active outdoors 

With over 300 acres to discover, there's plenty of ways you can get closer to nature. Take your bike for spin on the cycle trails, explore Engine Wood with your pooch, enjoy play time in the dog run (please keep dogs on a lead near the lakes) and join in fun and games for all the family on the vista, Thursday - Saturday.

Tortoiseshell butterfly at Nostell, Wakefield

Wildlife conservation in action

You might spot our rangers surveying Obelisk Park meadow this summer to monitor wildflowers and butterflies as part of our conservation work. Join the monthly parkland walk to spot which species we have at Nostell, with a special Big Butterfly Count on Saturday 10 August.

Nostell's kitchen gardener harvesting strawberries

Summer harvest

Make sure you visit the Kitchen Garden to see the glut of seasonal fruit and veg that our gardener, Mark grows for the cafe to create no miles meals. Come along to a Meet the Gardener event to pick up top tips for growing summer produce; from lettuce, beetroot and carrots to make colourful summer salads to raspberries, cherries and blackcurrants for tasty cakes and bakes.

Rapberry Crumble Bars at Nostell cafe, wakefield

From plot to plate 

Fuel up in the Courtyard Cafe with delicious homemade dishes using Nostell's homegrown fruit and veg. After a quick coffee and snack to go? Stop by the Bite to Eat kiosk and remember to bring your own resuable cup for 25p off your drink.

Acorn key rings are made of wood from Nostell parkland, West Yorkshire.

Stop by the shop 

Take home handcrafted wooden souvenirs made from Nostell's trees by local artist Bramfield Crafts, plants for your garden in sustainable pots from the Hairy Pot company as well as a varied range of gifts, books and toys. Every penny you spend goes back into conserving and protecting the National Trust's special places

Nostell's kitchen garden

Learn a new skill at Nostell

Pick up top tips for growing summer fruit and veg in our expert's gardening masterclass and carve your own creation in a green woodworking session.

The Menagerie House by Robert Adam at Nostell, near Wakefield

Mindful moments 

If you're looking for a quiet corner to escape the crowds, the Menagerie Garden is a tranquil spot to relax and listen to the birds singing. Finish off your afternoon with a prosecco cream tea at 4pm after the lunch rush has quietened down.

Volunteer guide Jim Hingle leading a Stables tour at Nostell, Wakefield.

Take a peek behind the scenes

Join a guided tour on selected dates to see Nostell's secret spaces and learn more about this special place. Book onto the Upstairs Downstairs tour (£5) to see where the servants slept or join a tour of the parkland, stables and kitchen garden.

A close up of the kitchen in the Nostell dolls' house.

Help us bring Nostell's dolls' house back to life 

Nostell's mini mansion is arguably the best example of its kind – and at over 260 years old it’s in vital need of conservation. See this priceless treasure on your visit and donate to help it sparkle again so that future generations can enjoy it.

Upcoming events

Messy Play Mondays

Mon 19 Aug 2019
11:00-15:00
Mud pie and wild water anyone? Let young imaginations run wild during weekly messy play sessions: the more mess the better!

Wildlife Hero Days

Tue 20 Aug 2019
11:00-15:00
Are you a Nostell nature superstar ready to answer the call of the wild? Get stuck in a made your own outdoor creation to take home.

Nostell Nestlings

Wed 21 Aug 2019
10:30-11:30
Join in fortnightly stories, crafts and outdoor activities with your mini adventurers, especially for children under 4.

Cycle skills with Wakefield District Cycle Forum

Wed 21 Aug 2019
11:00-15:00
Whether you dream of winning the Tour De France or free-wheeling without a wobble – Nostell’s the perfect place to learn cycling skills and love life in the saddle this summer.

Interior Worlds: Behind the Glass

Wed 21 Aug 2019
11:00-16:00
Join us as we celebrate “the Shakespeare of furniture”, Thomas Chippendale, and unravel the stories behind his ornate pier glass at the heart of the State Apartment.

A Gallop Through Time: riding school and stable tour

Wed 21 Aug 2019
14:00-15:00
Journey through time and discover the role of Nostell's horses on a brand new tour of the stables, loft and riding school.