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National Trust Opens its doors for Christmas in the Lakes

Hill Top house – festive fire in the kitchen. Copyright National Trust

National Trust houses and gardens across the Lakes are ready to welcome visitors for special days out this month. Christmas will look a little different for us all this year but the National Trust have sprinkled some festive magic at Hill Top, Sizergh and Allan Bank to help get us all in the spirit, from this weekend.

The National Trust team caring for Hill Top in Near Sawrey are preparing to re-open the house, after being closed since spring following Covid-19 restrictions. Beatrix Potter’s beloved Lakeland home will open weekends in December.

The team have removed the dustcovers ready to welcome visitors back inside the house again. Opening 10.30am – 3.30pm Saturdays and Sundays, visitors will have the chance to see the interior in a unique way as this is the first time the house has been open in the winter season. With reduced numbers this will give visitors a chance to experience the house in a calm and tranquil way, more like Beatrix did.

Ioan Waight, Manager at Hill Top commented “The team have worked hard to get here and are very much looking forward to lighting the fire again and giving visitors a very warm welcome back in to Hill Top. Allowing people back into the house to get close to Beatrix’s personal belongings will be a special moment at this festive time of year.”

In Grasmere wrap up warm at Allan Bank and head out with the family for woodland adventures, outdoor fires, lights and festive treats on weekends. From 27th to 31st December there’ll be chestnuts roasting on an open fire and the chance for you to bring your own marshmallows along and have a go at toasting them on the fire too, the perfect way to get into the Christmas spirit. On Sunday 20th December between 11am and 3pm hear a Saxophone duet playing live Christmas classics. Younger ones can let off some steam hunting for Foxy on a nature scavenger hunt around the grounds.

Peter Rabbit and friends are waiting to show you around the gardens and woodlands at Sizergh. Follow the clues, solve puzzles and find out about your favourite woodland creatures on a wintery adventure. Trail packs are available from the visitor centre, at a cost of £2. Warming hot chocolates will be found in the café with tasty turkey sandwiches to help beat those chilly days.

The Peter Rabbit™ Winter Adventure Activity Trail is also running at weekends at Hill Top. There will be nature-themed challenges to try along the way placed around the famous garden, as well as a Peter Rabbit selfie station at the end of the trail where everyone can take a picture with their favourite storybook rabbit.

The National Trust shops at Hill Top and Sizergh will also be open, stocked with unique gifts to help finish off the Christmas shopping.

All information and visiting arrangements are subject to the latest government guidance around coronavirus and are regularly reviewed at short notice. Please check the National Trust website and the individual property web pages for the place you wish to visit before you travel, and book tickets in advance to avoid disappointment. www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Hill Top house, shop and garden with Winter Trail open Saturdays & Sundays until 20th December, 10.30am – 3.30pm. Allan Bank 4th – 20th December: Friday – Sunday, 10.30am-4pm. Grounds and ground floor of the house. 27th – 31st December: Daily, 10.30am – 4pm. Grounds only.

Sizergh Winter Trail and garden open every day except Christmas day, 10am – 4pm. Sizergh café open every day except Christmas Day 10.30am – 4pm.  Estate open every day, dawn to dusk.

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