What to expect from your visit to Upton House and Gardens

Two adultsd and three children on a lawn next to a large hedge or tree in front of a large mansion house

Upton House and Gardens are open for pre-booked visits. To keep everyone safe, we’re limiting the number of visitors we can welcome at any one time, and staggering arrivals. You’ll need to book your visit in advance.

Whether you’ve visited before or plan on visiting for the first time, we’ve prepared some guidance about what to expect.

Parking and arrival

Please arrive within your half-hour timeslot, to help maintain social distancing.   You’re then welcome to stay for as long as you like until closing time at 5pm.  The carpark is locked at 5:30pm.

Please have your booking confirmation ready to show the visitor welcome team.  One family group only is permitted inside the visitor reception at any time.  You’ll need to wear a face covering when entering the reception building, and if you’re a member we’ll ask you to please self-scan your membership card and those of your party.   

Staying safe

To help keep everyone safe, please follow social distancing and government guidance when you visit. 

There is a one-way route in place across the property.  Collect a map at the entrance to guide you, and look out for signs, which will explain any changes to how you can access different parts of the site.

You’ll find hand sanitiser at the entrance to the property, inside the toilets and the Pavilion café. 

In line with government guidance, you'll need to wear a face covering when entering any building.  Please bring one with you. 

If you’re showing any of the symptoms of Coronavirus, or if you've been in contact with anyone that has the virus in the last 14 days, please don’t visit.

Explore the gardens and the mirror pool
View across a lake with lilly pads on an autumnal day. The ground rises steeply beyond the lake with large cedars behind
Explore the gardens and the mirror pool

Facilities 

Toilets in the plant centre – including accessible and baby changing facility - are open and are cleaned regularly by staff throughout the day. To help keep everyone safe, there’s two cubicles available in the ladies - two out, two in, and one in the gents – one out, one in. The accessible toilet is available for all visitors to use. 

Reward yourself with a bite to eat
Close up of a fruit scone on a plate with a knife, small tub of clotted cream and miniature jar of jam
Reward yourself with a bite to eat

The Pavilion café is open daily from 12:00pm – 4:00pm, serving takeaway sandwiches, cold savoury snacks such as sausage rolls, cakes and bakes and hot and cold drinks.  There is no seating available inside or outside the café. Please do bring along a small fold-up chair to use with your take away items as you stroll around the Winter Walk if you wish.

You’re welcome to bring a picnic with you.  Feel free to bring something to sit on, as seating around the property is limited right now.

The shop, plant centre and the second-hand book shop remains closed. 

Accessibility

We’re operating a one-way route to and from the carpark and around the garden. Most of the garden access is via steps and slopes, but it can be seen from the lawn.  

There is a wheelchair-accessible route around the garden. We’ve updated our access statement, with more information about way-marked routes, and what facilities are available across the property for visitors with specific requirements. We’re sorry, but the buggy is not currently running.  

How to book

All visitors must book a ticket in advance, including members. Entry and parking are free for members, but please bring your membership card with you. Non-members will need to pay in advance.

  • Please book one ticket per person, except for children aged 5 or under as they don’t need a ticket.
  • You’ll need to choose a 30-minute arrival time for the day you want to visit.
  • The timeslot is for your arrival time only.
  • Tickets are for your use only and are not available for resale.
  • We'll send your booking confirmation by email.  Please make sure you fill in your correct email address when you book to ensure you receive your confirmation email
  • Every Friday we'll release new bookings for visits the following week. You’ll need to book your tickets by 3pm the day before your visit.  

If you’ve booked a ticket but can no longer make your slot, we’d really appreciate it if you could cancel your ticket.  It takes just a couple of clicks and means someone else can visit in your place.

Carers can continue to access our places for free with an essential companions' card. Carers don't need to book a ticket for themselves, but the person they accompany will need a booked ticket.

Late autumn colours by the Mirror Pool
Autumn Pool Colour Upton
Late autumn colours by the Mirror Pool

Visiting the Gardens in winter

This wintertime take a walk in Upton’s gardens.  What will you discover along the woodland walk? The crunch of hoar frost on leaves, the icy bite of winter air that turns your cheeks rosy, the sound of the crow’s craw breaking silent skies.  Pause in the Quiet Orchard and see if you can see the wood for the trees.

Between November and March visits to the garden follow the winter walk; this year it is a one-way route around the perimeter of the gardens.  Upton’s situation, on the edge of an Ice Age valley, presents challenges for how we care for our beloved garden and ensure visitor safety.  By the time winter comes around, the steep historic grass paths wear thin and the clay soil becomes compacted and waterlogged.  The winter walk allows delicate sites in the garden time to rest and heal.

As the trees shed their leaves, the route also reveals the heart of the garden, together with clear views of the surrounding Warwickshire countryside.  This is the landscape where Lord Bearsted came for rest and relaxation in the 1930s.  Today Upton’s winter garden remains a space for leisurely strolls and a place to connect with nature.   

Visiting Upton House 

The house is currently closed. We aim to reopen when Government guidance allows.

Don’t miss

Whilst the house is closed do take a look at:

Fashion in Paintings: Exploring new perspectives on the art collection at Upton.

Part of A man and his wife by master of the St Barbara legend at Upton House
Head and shoulders of a man and a woman on a Middle Ages period painting.
Part of A man and his wife by master of the St Barbara legend at Upton House

Jenny Lister, Curator of Fashion and Textiles at the V&A Museum, London, takes over the interpretation of 12 paintings. Look out for her labels as you walk around the house. Find out more here.