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Portaferry Road, Newtonwards,
Northern Ireland, BT22 2AD

02842 788387

02842 788569

Listed By

William Donelson

0000-00-00 00:00:00

Opening Days and Hours
Dates/days/times open:

Lakeside gardens: all year; daily (except 25th/26 Dec); 10am - 6pm Formal gardens: 12th Mar - 31st Oct, daily; 10am - 6pm

Parties/Coaches: Yes
Group Appointment: Yes
House Open for Viewing: Yes

12th Mar - 31st Oct; every day 11am - 6pm, Admission only by guided tour. Last admission 5pm Temple of the Winds: 13th Mar - 31st Oct; Sundays Only; 2pm - 5pm.

National Garden Scheme days: No
Best Times of Year to Visit:

May and June

To see:
Admission Prices

Gift Aid Admission (Standard Admission prices in brackets): Adult £7 (£6.36), child £3.50 (£3.18), family £17.50 (£15.90)

Onsite Facilities
Parking: Yes
Shop: Yes
Teas: Yes
Dogs Allowed: Yes
Lavatories: Yes
Plants for Sale: Yes
Refreshment: Yes
On Lead only: Yes
Disabled Access: Yes
Lunches: Yes
Picnics: Yes
Special Events: Yes
Other Facilities & Comments:
Garden Features & Events

Neo-classical house and celebrated gardens; One of Northern Ireland's most popular National Trust properties; Celebrated landscaped park: European Garden of Inspiration 2003; Dramatic views across Strangford Lough from the Temple of the Winds; Former home to a fascinating array of political leaders and society figures; Huge George Stubbs painting voted one of Britain's 100 Greatest Works of Art; See the 22 chairs used at the landmark Congress of Vienna, called to redefine Europe's frontiers after the fall of Napoleon. Opening Weekend including Second Hand Book Fair 12 & 13 March Grand Garden and Craft Fair 21 and 22 May Vehicles of YesterYear - Father's Day 19 June European Heritage Open Day 10 September Food Glorious Food - 8 & 9 October Hallowe'en Enchanted Garden - 30 October

English Heritage/Visit Scotland Garden Grade:
National Collection:

Phormium, Libertia, Dianella.

Nearby Cambridgeshire Hotels, Facilities & Amenities

Hotels & Accommodation:

The Strangford Arms


The Bay Restaurant

Inns & Pubs:

Wildfowler, Grey Abbey

Villages / Towns / Sightseeing:
Description of Garden

It would be hard to overestimate the entrancing effect on the visitor of this wonderful garden. Lady Londonderry triumphantly succeeded in creating one of the great gardens of Europe, and one which no visitor to Ireland should miss. From the extravagantly planted Italian Garden near the house, where you may begin your tour, to the 15 acres of rhododendrons through which you return, you will find an almost unbelievable variety of plants, shrubs and trees sheltered to the south by woods and benefiting from the adjacent sea lough, nearness to the Irish Sea and the Gulf Stream.

Lady Londonderry took advice from Sir John Ross of Rostrevor, Co. Down and from Sir Herbert Maxwell of Montreith, Scotland but she has imbued the place with her own idiosyncratic character and striking sense of humour, as illustrated by the figures on the Dodo Terrace in animal form some of which were politicians, members of her family, members of the armed forces and so on. Nearby is the Mairi Garden illustrating the nursery rhyme, Mairi, Mairi, quite contrary in cockle shells, silver bells (campanulas) and Pretty Maids (saxifrage) all in a row.

But the garden is supreme in its variety, not only is there the grand sunken Italian parterre, but also a Spanish parterre beyond it, a tiled garden house, a further Sunken garden to the West of the house based on a design sent to her by Gertrude Jekyll, the famous garden of Irish symbolism and the wooded walks, lawns and the extraordinary burial ground with its white stag to bear you to heaven. In this garden you may feel that you are already there.

History Of Garden

The 3rd Marquess had dug out the lake in the 1840s and planted around it but Lady Londonderry began transforming this garden in the early 1920s from the darkest, dampest, saddest place she had ever stayed in to its present splendour. Amongst many other successes she planted the Jubilee Avenue (in reds, whites and blues) in 1936 to mark the Silver Jubilee of George V and Queen Mary. Lady Mairi Bury planted the Memorial Glade in 1959 after her mother's death. The garden is certainly one of the brightest jewels in the National Trust's crown.

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