Petworth Deer Park

A frosty view of the 700 acre parkland at Petworth

The majestic 700-acre park at Petworth is one of the finest surviving and unspoilt examples of an English landscape designed by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown. Explore our historic park at Petworth, wander in the footsteps of artists, encounter our majestic herd of deer and sweep away the cobwebs with our walking trails. You’ll find something to stop and admire wherever you walk.

Escape the every day

Boasting far-reaching views of the South Downs, our historic park is an ideal place to escape the crowds, take an invigorating walk and let the kids run wild. Petworth Park is open for you to enjoy every day of the year. 

Finding your way

Petworth Park is owned and managed by the National Trust, and the wall around the 700 acre deer park is 14 miles long. The grounds are managed sustainably for wildlife and are protected under a Higher Level Stewardship agreement with Natural England.   

Petworth Park is open 8am to 8pm British summer time and 6pm in the winter. It has a dedicated car park, which lies one mile north of Petworth on the A283 (the closest SAT NAV postcode is GU28 9LS).

Parking is £4 or free for National Trust members. There are also pedestrian entrances through the Cowyard tunnel in Petworth town and two on the A272 Midhurst Road.

Walks

During the third Earl of Egremont's (1751-1837) 'Golden Age' of Petworth, artists like English Romantic painter JMW Turner were invited to Petworth to take inspiration from the collection and the surrounding landscape.

Take a walk around Petworth Park and discover the views that inspired Turner on his visits, you can then see these views for yourself in the Carved Room of Petworth House.

Dog walking

The third Earl of Egremont was a lover of dogs, particularly spaniels.  The Deer Park is an area where we allow dogs under close supervision. To walk dogs in the park please park in the Deer Park car park and not the car park for Petworth House.

A historic herd

Our magnificent herd of fallow deer have called Petworth Park home for over 500 years. They were reportedly hunted by Henry VIII on his visit to Petworth in the 1500s. Today around 700 of them grace the parkland. See if you can glimpse a few as you explore.

Wildlife

Discover some of our ancient and veteran trees, some of which are nearly 1,000 years old and were mere saplings in 1066.

History

The landscape gives every impression of being totally natural but in reality nothing is further from the truth. The park was transformed in the 1750s and early 1760s by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown stripping away the formal gardens and the long driveway to the front of Petworth House to create a serpentine lake framed by rolling hills and wide sweeping vistas of a perfect 'natural' looking landscape.

Since this transformation, entrance to the house has been through the courtyard on the other side of the house, and guests would have arrived through the town of Petworth.

The project took 12 years and no less than five contracts to complete. To this day Petworth remains a supreme surviving example of Capability Brown's landscape portfolio.