Creating The Children's Country House

Child looking amazed at the collection

Our curators and conservators have worked alongside children and experts in heritage engagement and learning to create an experience where children are encouraged to be curious and have fun with history. All while protecting the late 17th-century collections.

The development of The Children’s Country House started in 2017. Sudbury Hall has always been a popular destination for families, largely due to the Museum, which was installed in the Victorian wing of the Hall in 1974 by Derbyshire County Council.  

With this family audience growing rapidly in recent years, we recognised we had an opportunity to reassess the property and its programming with families in mind. It felt like a natural step for us to think more deeply about how children experience historic country houses. 

Through hours of conversations and sharing ideas the concept of The Children’s Country House was born.  

Let your imagination run wild
Little girl playing int he Long Gallery
Let your imagination run wild

The Children’s Country House at Sudbury sees all three components of the property - the Hall, Museum and Gardens - coming together under one core proposition. We have considered every aspect and asked, how can we make this a place where every child feels comfortable, welcome and can lead their own visit? 

To ensure we stay true to our ambition, The Children’s Country House is being created with, for and by children, underpinned by a range of expertise and research. We recruited a group of over 100 child ambassadors who have helped us along this journey to creating The Children’s Country House. Through developing ideas with us, designing elements and trialling and testing some of the activities. Their enthusiasm and creativity has blown us away! 

The ambassadors helped to trial and test ideas and activities.
Thumbs up post it note saying it's awesome, with a fairground galloper horse in the background
The ambassadors helped to trial and test ideas and activities.

We want to engage children with our collections, with stories and with history by providing a fun, heritage day out where children can use their natural curiosity to safely explore the property without barriers. 

From 7th May 2022 we are pleased to share all the new and exciting activities and installations in the Museum and Gardens. The Hall will be open later in 2022 and we look forward to being able to share more of the journey with you then.  

For more on what you can see and do at The Children’s Country House visit the link below.