Penshurst Place and Gardens
Ancestral home of the Sidney family since 1552, though originally built in 1341, Penshurst Place has been described as "the grandest and most perfectly preserved example of a fortified manor house in all of England". The 11 acres of Gardens are as old as the original house - the walls and terraces were added in the Elizabethan era - and are divided into a series of selfcontained garden rooms. Each garden room offers an abundance of variety in form, foliage and bloom and ensures a continuous display from Spring to Autumn.
Amongst the many garden highlights is the celebrated 100-metre peony border containing four varieties of heavenly-scented pink double peonies as well as a number of herbaceous and mixed borders. The double herbaceous border Jubilee Walk follows Gertrude Jekyll's principle of hotly coloured beds extending through the palette to cooler tones, while the Blue and Yellow border contains two new varieties of Iris cultivated for Penshurst Place by specialist British breeder Olga Wells, I.Penshurst Blue and I. Penshurst Yellow.
Add to this an abundance of roses, 500 fruit trees including one bearing pears mentioned by Shakespeare, 12,500 Jewel of Spring tulips, a magnolia garden, ponds and fountains, ancient trees & parkland, lakes & woodland, globes & heraldic topiary - and it is easy to see why Penshurst Place is one of Kent's most enduring and cherished gardens.
Opening Times: Weekends from 10th February - 25th March. Daily from 30th March - 28th October
Admission Rates: To Gardens: Adults £9.50, Child (5-15) £6.00, Family Ticket (2+2) £29.00. Entrance to House small additional charge.
Group Rates: Freeflow (inc entry to H & G), Adults £9.00, Child £5.00. House or Garden Tour, Adults £11.00
Child £5.50. Combined House & Garden Tour, Adults £18.00, Child £10.00. Tours with the Head Gardener an additional £70.00 per group. All rates quoted include entrance to House and Grounds. Student and Garden only group rates available on request.
Facilities: Gift Shop, Garden Restaurant, Porcupine Pantry, Plant Centre, Toy Museum & Garden History Exhibition in Garden Tower.
Disabled Access: Garden Yes, House DVD of staterooms in Baron's Hall. Toilet and parking for disabled visitors are on site, wheelchairs on loan, booking necessary.
Tours/Events: Special joint entrance with other nearby attractions. Penshurst cream tea and high tea for groups if pre-booked. Also combined ‘Tea & Tour' and 'Lunch & Tour' special offers for groups. A full events programme throughout the season. See website for details. Coach Parking: Yes.
Length of Visit: 2 - 3 hours
Booking Contact: Wendy Warshafsky
Head of Visitor Services. Penshurst Place, Penshurst, Nr Tonbridge, Kent TN11 8DG
Telephone: 01892 870307
Location: M25 junction 5, follow A21 to Hastings. Exit at Hildenborough then for groups follow brown tourists signs.