Exploring the garden and estate at Speke Hall
The garden at Speke Hall is filled with colour and history, and there are plenty of spots to relax and feel close to nature on the estate. There's always something new to discover as you explore one of the best places to go for a walk in Merseyside and the North West.
Autumn highlights in the garden
The North Lawn
The North Lawn is the ideal spot for striking views of the front of the hall, especially on crisp mornings. Take a wander to the Jackson Border to the west of the lawn, where you'll find a burgeoning trees and plants of all kinds establishing themselves in this new addition to the North Lawn.
If you're feeling adventurous, head down the path along the west side of the house to spot a Metasequoia glyptstroboides – a rare tree with distinctive bark, once thought to be extinct.
The Moat Garden
Explore the paths around the old moat, surrounded by evergreen topiary that has been shaped to perfection by the garden team and enjoy the autumn flowering bulbs, newly planted by visitors and volunteers to the west of the moat.
The South Lawn
Walk in the footsteps of Speke Hall's 19th-century residents as you stroll around the South Lawn, taking advantage of the new path through the trees. Tall topiary lines the paths and giant monkey puzzle trees tower over the manicured lawns.
The Kitchen Garden
Step into the Kitchen Garden to see an impressive garden that has been transformed over the past decade from a large empty space. The team of hard-working volunteers who look after the Kitchen Garden will be harvesting the fruits of their labours during autumn, much of which will end up in the recipes served at our Home Farm restaurant.
The Secret Garden
This hidden oasis in the north-west corner of Speke Hall's grounds is accessible via an enticing narrow tunnel at one end and a winding path at the other. The gentle stream running through it makes the Secret Garden a haven for some of Speke's wildlife, so keep your eyes peeled for birds in particular.
One of the highlights here is a rare Wollemi pine or 'dinosaur tree'. Previously thought to be extinct, this species was in the news in late 2019 when the small area where the tree originates in Australia was threatened by devastating bushfires.
The Secret Garden was restored in 2017 thanks to generous donations from the Alan Evans Memorial Trust, Crosby National Trust Association, Oldham and District National Trust Association and the Chester and District National Trust Association.
The Clough woodland
For a relaxing woodland walk, go to the corner of the South Lawn to enter the Clough. Look out for Speke's bustling birdlife as you go around and notice the Bund towering over you, sheltering you from the sea breeze coming in off the Mersey and helping to create the micro-climate that makes Speke's gardens special.
Head towards the river from Home Farm and you'll find the Bund path, which you can climb up to enjoy a bird's-eye view of the River Mersey and Liverpool John Lennon Airport. Through the slowly bearer trees in autumn, you can enjoy a special elevated view of the Hall. Take a seat on one of the benches to enjoy a picnic, watch overwintering birds and spot planes flying over your head.
Explore the wider estate
Venture into Stockton's Wood to discover a semi-ancient woodland filled with wildlife and secrets. Did you know this woodland was used by the American military during World War II to hide aircraft from German spy planes? You can enter the woodland from the car park and along the main drive.
Stride out onto acres of hay meadows, accessible from the main drive. The meadows are carefully managed by the rangers and are important habitats that support a wide variety of birds, insects and mammals.
The Speke and Garston Coastal Reserve
For more adventurous types, the Coastal Reserve path takes you onto the Speke Garston Coastal Reserve, a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest filled with wildlife and aviation history. Walk along the old airport runway or go down to the shoreline of the Mersey and watch the varied birdlife.
Your support helps Speke Hall's garden to grow. Every time you visit and every penny you spend while you're here gives Speke Hall’s staff and volunteers the support they need to care for this special place.
Discover the hall's fascinating objects and architectural features online and learn about the Norris family’s dangerous life under Elizabethan rule.
This pass scheme is available to residents of Speke and some parts of Garston. With the pass, you and your family will be able to visit Speke Hall for free throughout the year.
Home Farm restaurant is open every day for you to grab a drink or a bite to eat. Afterwards, pop into the second-hand bookshop to find a pre-loved gem.
Dogs on leads are welcome to explore most areas of Speke Hall's grounds. Find out where you can go with your dog, what facilities are available to them and other important information at this two pawprint rated place.
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