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The house at Leith Hill Place

A view across lawn to the south front of Leith Hill Place country house, built in around 1600, at Leith Hill, Surrey. It's pale grey with a central building and a wing on either side
The south front of Leith Hill Place country house | © National Trust Images/Andrew Butler

Step inside Leith Hill Place, a welcoming home from home nestled in the Surrey Hills. Childhood home of one of England’s greatest composers Ralph Vaughan Williams, Leith Hill is a place of creativity and inspiration.

Come to our 'Unwrapping of the House'

25, 26 and 27 May, 11am-5pm

As we re-open the doors after a year of essential conservation work, be amongst the first to see the completely restored exterior and exciting and innovative exhibitions and artworks inside. Spoil yourself with a home baked cream tea or an ice cream on the terrace overlooking the Sussex Weald. Normal admission applies

Exterior view of the top of Leith Hill Place with scaffolding on one end
See the house unwrapped after a year of conservation work | © National Trust/Richard Knapp

Inspiring invertebrates

This year the house is honouring its connections with naturalist Charles Darwin (Ralph Vaughan William's great uncle) who was a regular visitor to Leith Hill Place. Darwin and his niece Lucy, conducted experiments about the activity and movement of earthworms, and you can still see his 'worm stone' in the grounds today.

Join us as we explore our relationships with invertebrates and discover their magical world through a series of display, talks and events.

Contemporary art

As part of our celebration of the role of invertebrates, local artists and students from University of the Creative Arts Surrey have responded to a brief ‘Tread Carefully.’ Come along and experience their installations, some emotive, some challenging, some inspiring and others humorous.

A selection of cakes and a china jug of cream laid out on the table in the kitchen at Leith Hill Place
Treat yourself to a slice of homemade cake | © NTi/John Miller

The Kitchen

A visit to Leith Hill Place wouldn’t be the same without a homemade cream tea from the Kitchen. All our cakes are freshly baked on site from the original kitchens and taste even better when relaxing on on the terrace with its far-reaching views over the Weald .

The Library@LHP

Visit the beautifully panelled second-hand bookshop with its wide selection of fiction and non-fiction books, as well as some interesting and rare specimens. Why not pick up a bargain and then dwell a while on a cosy sofa in the library, or find your quiet space on the terrace and lose yourself in a good book.

A man, two children and a dog walk up the front steps to enter Leith Hill Place, Surrey. The photo is taken from inside the double doors inside
Visitors entering the Hall at Leith Hill Place, Surrey. | © National Trust Images/John Miller

For Families

Leith Hill Place is a great place to bring the whole family including the four-legged members. Why not combine it with a trip up Leith Hill Tower? Or just come along and enjoy games on the lawn or relax in the library with a good book. We've also got storytelling sessions for little ones on selected Saturday mornings and events throughout the year.

Dogs at Leith Hill Place

Well-behaved dogs on short leads are welcome at Leith Hill Place. You'll find water bowls in the courtyard and just inside the front door and dog (and human) ice cream is available to buy from the Kitchen.

A female violinist and a female harpist playing in front of a stained glass window with the light streaming through
Hear Aoife Ní Bhriain and Catrin Finch perform at Leith Hill Place | © Jennie Caldwell

Events at Leith Hill Place

With a packed programme of events throughout the summer, there's so much to see and do at Leith Hill Place. From free guided walks and tea-time talks, to children's storytelling, art workshops and amospheric concerts in the house, find out what's coming up this season.

Vaughan Williams’ piano

In the study you’ll find the little piano on which famous composer Ralph Vaughan Williams wrote many of his famous works. The piano was used to write compositions including 'The Lark Ascending', which has been named the nation’s favourite piece of classical music.

The piano, a Broadwood with a model name of ‘Honeysuckle’, dates from 1903 and was bought second-hand by Vaughan Williams in 1905. He kept the instrument close to hand through his most productive and important years.

The piano remained in the Williams family for many years until recently. It has been restrung and fitted with a new tuning plank so that the piano can once again be played.

Vaughan Williams’ piano was kindly donated to Leith Hill Place in 2016 by Frances Rhodes (niece of Ursula Vaughan Williams, the composer’s widow) and is now on permanent display at Leith Hill Place.

Whether you start or finish your walk here, rest in between, or make this your destination for a great day out, come through Leith Hill Place's doors and be inspired by the landscape around. Maybe compose some music, poetry, draw, paint or just take time to relax, slow down and soak up the far-reaching views across the Weald to the South Downs.

The composer must not shut himself up and think about art, he must live with his fellows and make his art an expression of the whole life of the community

A quote by Ralph Vaughan Williams British composer (1872-1958)
Visitors at Leith Hill Tower, Surrey. Two people are sitting on a bench with their dog and two bikes.

Discover more at Leith Hill

Find out when Leith Hill is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

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