Booking your car parking

Euphorbia and forget-me-nots on the Old Castle island

If you're planning a visit to Scotney, please note there is booking system in place for the car park. Aimed at helping us manage visitor arrivals and improve our visitor experience, you can reserve your car parking space with a few quick clicks. (We appreciate this may remove some of the spontaneity surrounding your visit but it is the best way to guarantee your entry and avoid disappointment.) Subject to parking spaces still being availability, you can book up to 8am on the day of your visit, but we do recommend booking further in advance.

To guarantee your entry to Scotney Castle you need to reserve your car parking space via the booking link on this website or via the Scotney page on the National Trust app.

Starting at 10am, you select an hour slot and can then arrive at Scotney at any time during this hour and stay for as long as you wish. The last hour of the day, 4-5pm, will be drive-up only.

To help combine flexibility with the ability to plan ahead, we are operating a four-week rolling booking system and, subject to spaces being available, you can book until 8am on the day of your visit.

As the booking system is for the car park only, once you are on site you can visit the house, gardens, estate, tea-room, shop and play areas with no further need to book and no time pressure to be in a particular place at a particular time. We hope this will help to make your visit a truly relaxing experience. 

We're asking members and non-members alike to use the booking system in order to guarantee entry. Non-members will be asked to pay for their parking at the time of booking; members will just need to enter their membership number for free parking as normal.

Booking System FAQs

We realise you will have questions about the system and we hope the information below will answer them.

Why are we introducing a booking system again?

We know that parking at Scotney at peak times can sometimes be a little frustrating so, to help manage and improve this situation, we're trialling a booking system for the car park this year. By using a booking system we’re able to manage the arrival times of cars to Scotney so everyone can arrive knowing that we will have space for you and get your visit off to a great start. 

How will the booking system work?

In order to avoid disappointment and guarantee entry to Scotney, visitors should book their car parking for their chosen date and time on the Scotney Castle website in advance of their visit. There are hourly time slots each day, from 10am until 3pm, and you can arrive at any time in your allocated hour slot; in fact we recommend that you don’t aim to arrive right at the beginning of your hour's slot as this tends to be the busiest time. Subject to availability, booking can be done up until 8am each day. Your booking will be checked on arrival by one of our Visitor Welcome staff prior to you entering the car park. Once on site you can stay as long as you wish.

How/when can I book to visit?

We strongly recommend you book your car parking in advance of your visit to Scotney via our website or by calling the supporter service centre on 0344 249 1895. (Please note that we can't take your booking on the Scotney phone line.) Without a booking we can't guarantee parking and therefore entry. We’ll be releasing tickets every Thursday on a rolling basis for four weeks ahead. For example, if you’d like to visit Scotney on Sunday 8 May, this will be available to book from Thursday 7 April.

If I’m a member do I need to book to visit?

Yes. We’re asking all visitors, including members, to book their parking in advance. When we’ve used a booking system in the past 95% of those booking to visit were members. By using a booking system we’re able to manage the number of cars at Scotney at any one time.

I don’t want to visit the house or gardens. Do I still need to book?

Yes, we’re asking all visitors, including members, to book their car parking in advance of their visit, even if you just want to visit the wider estate. Booking at Scotney is just to secure your entry time to the car park. Once on site you’ll be able to enjoy the estate, gardens or house at your leisure with no time pressure.

Will I be let in without a booking? / What if I just turn up?

To guarantee entry, you need to book your parking in advance of your visit to Scotney. You will be able to book up until 8am on the day of your visit if we’re not already fully booked.

If you haven’t booked you may be able to turn up and gain entry but entry then is dependant on parking spaces being available. Whilst we appreciate the requirement to book reduces spontaneity, booking your ticket in advance does avoid potential disappointment. We therefore recommend booking tickets as far in advance as possible.

Your booking system is geared up for those arriving by car, what about those on foot?

If you are arriving at Scotney on foot or by bicycle, there is no need to book in advance.

Is there a set time that new bookings are available?

New bookings are released on Thursdays on a four-week rolling basis, but there isn’t a set time when bookings are made available. We suggest visitors check the Scotney website from 10am to see when tickets become available.

Can I book on the National Trust app?

Yes, you can also use the National Trust app to book your parking at Scotney.

Will I have to print out my booking or can I show them on my phone?

Please don't print out your booking. We’re asking visitors to show their tickets on their phone, and we may ask you to share your name and booking number when you arrive at Scotney. If you are a National Trust member, please also have your membership card ready to be scanned.

If I no longer want to visit, can I give my booked slot to someone else?

If you have an account and need to change the date or time of your booking, you can do this through your online account up to 24 hours before your booked timeslot. Please note, you can only amend your booking if you have a DigiTickets account which can only be created at the time of booking. To cancel your booking, please call our booking team on 0344 249 1895.

What about people who don’t show up?

We keep track of the number of people who don’t show up for their booking and try to account for this in the number of tickets available on any given day. We're also asking those who aren't able to visit as planned, to amend their booking via their online DigiTickets account or to give our booking team a call so we can make tickets available again.

What if I don’t have access to the internet?

If you are unable to book online, you can call our booking team on 0344 249 1895 or use the National Trust app.

Are you charging an admin fee for bookings?

We’re not charging an admin fee for booking.