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Accessibility at Stoneywell

A display of autumnal gourds and flowers on a windowsill inside the cottage at Stoneywell, with a tiny staircase built into the cottage wall to the left.
Autumn display in the cottage at Stoneywell | © National Trust Images/Susan Guy

We want to make sure that everyone can enjoy their time at Stoneywell. The cottage and garden present challenges in creating access for all, but we are taking steps to ensure that as many people as possible can explore the cottage and its story. Read more to discover how you can best access this special place.

Arrival and parking

  • There are brown signs from the A50 giving directions to the car park at Stoneywell, on Whitcroft's Lane. As the car park is located away from the main site, satnav directions should be ignored whenever these differ to local signage.
  • There are five designated parking spaces for visitors with a disability; these are on a flat, loose-gravel surface, immediately to the right of the shuttlebus shelter.
  • A shuttlebus is available to take all visitors to and from the stables, where you will be welcomed by a member of the team, and you can find the toilets and tearoom.
  • There is a side-step into the bus and an electric ramp at the rear of the vehicle.
  • We encourage any visitors using a wheelchair or personal mobility vehicle to contact us in advance of a visit, as it is also possible to arrange drop-off at the stables by a travelling companion.
  • Assistance dogs are welcome throughout the property, including on the shuttlebus and inside the cottage.

Moving around the site

  • There are many grassed, steep slopes around the four-acre garden, as well as some stone steps leading to the cottage both at the end of the drive and near a small outdoor seating area at the front of the cottage.
  • Staff in the stables are on-hand to advise on accessible routes around the garden, with the tarmac drive providing mostly level access between the cottage and the stables.
  • There is a circular walk around 11 acres of Stoneywell Wood: the full route takes approximately 20 minutes but there is a shorter loop of around five minutes. Each route leads along an earthen path, with some tree roots and wooden bridges at intervals.
A view of the Dining Room at Stoneywell with a slate floor, steps leading up to the left and the dining table and chairs on the right
The cottage is built over seven different levels, with several stone and wooden staircases | © National Trust Images/Susan Guy

Moving around the cottage

  • The 11 rooms in the cottage have been built on seven different levels.
  • There are two stone, spiral staircases with a rope handle, and four wooden staircases, of which one is a spiral.
  • At select times during the day, volunteers provide guided tours of the cottage for up to ten people per tour. Tours last approximately 40 minutes.
  • At other times, the cottage is open for visitors to explore at their own pace, with volunteers on hand to provide assistance and answer any questions.
  • There is good natural light throughout the cottage, with electric ceiling lights in use when required.
  • On colder days, the log fire in the sitting room is lit, with a metal fireguard placed in front.
  • There is seating in most of the rooms, including armchairs and window seats - these are distinguished from fragile chairs in the collection, which have hats, books and other items on them.

Facilities

  • The visitor toilets are situated in the stables and include an accessible toilet.
  • The accessible toilet is a right-hand transfer with handrails on both sides, and is lit by a fluorescent bulb. It contains paper towels for hand drying and baby changing facilities.
  • There are no automatic hand dryers in any of the toilets.
  • The tearoom is also located in the stables, and is accessed by a gradual slope from the front of the building.
  • There are three stone steps leading to an outdoor seating area with wooden tables and stools.
  • Inside, there are wooden tables with stools, and higher stools around a counter which is 956mm high. The furniture can be rearranged to accommodate wheelchair users.
  • There is an induction loop at the till point, and large-handled cutler, double-handed mugs and straws are available on request.
  • There is also a second-hand bookshop inside the tearoom.
A stone cottage is framed by magnolia branches with pink flowers and green leaves, at Stoneywell, Leicestershire

Accessibility guide to visiting Stoneywell

For more detailed information about accessibility at Stoneywell, please have a look at the full access statement.

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