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Visit To Highclere Castle


By AndrewR


Highclere Castle is probably more recognisable as the setting for Downton Abbey. The building we see today was rebuilt in 1842 by the 3rd Earl of Carnarvon after marrying a rich heiress. The 5th Earl is famous for the discovery of the tomb of the pharaoh Tutankhamun in Egypt in 1922.

The main attractions are a tour round many of the rooms on the ground and first floors of the house. Sometimes you see pictures of the current family and their ancestors; at other points it’s the fictional characters so there are several stories to unravel. In the basement, the original servants’ quarters, is a large exhibition about Egyptian archaeology and the story of the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb, including some of the items actually found there (which were discovered at Highclere after the last Earl’s death).

The garden is not really much of a feature yet, but is obviously being slowly developed as visitor numbers are now increasing. The original walled kitchen garden, now contains ornamental plants including a greenhouse full of roses for cutting for the house. These red monardas seems very much at home.

On the shady side, a white border is being planted. Hydrangea ‘Annabelle’ occurs in several places.

Outside the walls is a secret garden

And there are early plantings of trees in a woodland area. Finally, you return to the house across a wild flower meadow

Highclere Castle is south of Newbury. It’s well worth a visit, and if you can get there on a day without too many coaches in the car park, so much the better.

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Looks a lovely place to visit ..
thanks for the info. and pics ..
A fascinating mix of Downton and the real owners !
The Secret Garden looks pretty.

27 Jul, 2012


It looks quite dramatic with all those finials on the towers, I wonder if someone in the family was excavating in egypt

27 Jul, 2012


really enjoyed your blog Andrew.

27 Jul, 2012


What a lovely house - thanks for showing it

27 Jul, 2012


Interesting blog - thanks for sharing

27 Jul, 2012


Thankyou Andrew, I`m an avid fan of Downton and really into visiting these grand houses and learning their history...

29 Aug, 2012

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