Remember remember the 5th of November ...

Staff and volunteers enjoying the evening at the Mercure Leicester

The team at Stoneywell certainly won't forget since we were awarded Highly Commended in the Small Visitor Attraction category at the Leicester and Leicestershire Excellence in Tourism Awards 2015!

Since opening its doors to the public for the first time in February 2015, Stoneywell has welcomed almost 30,000 visitors. A rare surviving example of a traditional Arts and Crafts house designed and built by Leicester-born Ernest Gimson for his brother Sydney, Stoneywell was acquired by the National Trust in late 2012.

The only National Trust house in Leicestershire, a project team of staff and volunteers has brought Stoneywell to life. As well as opening up the cottage for intimate guided tours, four acres of garden have been re-established to play the stage for a display of over 150 rhododendron species and the woodland, with its SSSI status, offers a haven for varied flora and fauna. Since opening conservation and repairs have continued, with visitors able to see the garden being developed and additions to the cottage such as a handcrafted replica of an original Gimson cot.

Stoneywell has a great story that, until now, has been largely untold: the realisation of one man’s Arts and Crafts vision within a family home. The property is a rare opportunity to learn about the internationally-significant Arts and Crafts Movement alongside personal stories from the Gimson family. 

" It’s a great reward for the whole team who have worked hard to bring Stoneywell to life."
- Caroline Taylor, Operations Manager

Caroline added, “We want to keep making improvements and making the cottage, garden and woodlands interesting for our visitors – and it is great to see that work recognised in this way.

“We’ve tried to recreate the atmosphere of the cottage as a much-loved family home while also preserving original features. Visitors are immersed into a cottage full of family memories and nostalgia. There are no ropes and visitors are invited to get up close to iconic Arts and Crafts furniture. Through this Stoneywell becomes a home from home, and visitors wholly connect with the property and its stories.”

Finalists in the awards were judged based on evidence of excellence and best practice in all areas of the business operations, from customer service and marketing to accessibility and sustainability.