Attingham Park – a Grade I listed country house in Shropshire, pictures, videos and things to see
Located in Shropshire, Attingham Park is a country house set in a 4,000 acre estate near the village of Atcham. Built in 1785 for the first Lord Berwick, Attingham Park and the parkland stand as remnants of a family fortune that rose and fell. Designed by architect George Steuart, the 18th century mansion is a remarkable emblem of love and neglect by the family, reserved for over 200 years in time.
A Grade I listed building, managed and owned by National Trust, Attingham Park and the country house itself is manned by exceptionally friendly National Trust volunteers and staff. They are always on hand to share their enthusiasm and knowledge whether it is about the history of the estate, re-enacting the kitchen works or just simply managing the upkeep of the vast grounds.
Things to see
A visit to the Attingham Park can be a fantastic whole day out for the family, a curious visitor or a couple looking for a romantic day out exploring the beautiful gardens, woodlands and luxury 18th century halls.
The beautiful walled gardens are a remarkable beacon of self-sufficiency with 18th century storage facilities such as frost free root vegetable storage cellars and original boilers for heating the green houses. The apple orchard and gardens still yield their own produce which can be bought seasonally from the onsite shop.
The hall itself is worth taking at least 2/3 hours for exploration which can take you back in time with a grand display of luxurious reception rooms, dining halls and picture galleries. Beautiful staircases and landings are among the top eye catching features of the hall.
The Mile Walk, as the name suggests, is approximately a mile long easy/moderate walk partly along the River Tern with views looking across the grounds, starting from walled gardens leading up to the grand mansion.
The dining room which has been set up in a stunning display that re-enacts the 18th century style of fine dining. The room is currently setup as a diplomatic banquet for William, 3rd Lord Berwick and is currently one of the most elaborate/complete room of the Attingham Park display project. The evening entertaining setup also helps minimise light damage.
Dinner was a well-orchestrated event at Attingham Park and the elaborate table settings were a display of ultimate luxury. The table comprises of the highest quality ormolu table pieces (a gold-coloured alloy of copper, zinc, and tin used in decoration and making ornaments), silver table wear by Paul Storr (Paul Storr was an English goldsmith and silversmith working in the Neoclassical style during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries) and Dagoty porcelain (A hard paste porcelain factory in the rue de Chevreuse, Paris leased by brothers Pierre-Louis (1771-1840) and Etienne-Jean-Baptiste Dagoty (1772-1800). The factory at some point supplied porcelain for Versailles. The products were of very high quality with painting in colours, attractive ground colours and extravagant gilding.) all at the height of fashion and all extremely expensive.
The room was originally designed to be seen and used in the evening coming alive in candlelight with the flickering glows reflecting from the gleaming surfaces. An army of servants would look after the diners as serving food would have been a challenge due the location of the room within the house itself.
Percussion rifle made by Samuel Ebrall of Shrewsbury c. 1860
The splendid rifle on display is made of steel, walnut and horn. The rifling used on this gun was patented by Richard, 5th Lord Berwick in 1840 and was used by British Army in the nineteenth century. Richard also advised Her Majesty’s Government and was known to be a superb shot.
The lock of the rifle is a percussion lock with broader line engraving and signed Saml. Ebrall maker, Shrewsbury. It is retained to the stock by 2 sidenails.
The stock is walnut full-stock with chequered wrist and fore-stock. There is a fitting for auxiliary aperture sight behind the barrel tang.
It is a round rifled barrel with flat top with the following stamp at the breech, RIFLED BY LORD BERWICK.
Servants dining room and residential quarters were generally a modest affair. Some interesting rules can be found on display which includes the following:
- Strict cleanliness, decency of demeanor, respectful conduct and obedient to the upper servants is ordered
- The time of rising for servants will be between 5 and 6 in Summer and 6 and 7 in the winter
- The hours for meals will be: breakfast 8 am, dinner 1 pm, tea 5 pm, supper 9 pm
- No spitting or cussing at any time
- All servants are expected to attend divine service in the church at least once every Sunday
by Lord Berwick
There would usually be a French or French trained chef in the kitchen who would be hired directly by Lord Berwick. The chef will be mainly preparing family meals and controlled the finances of the kitchen and its environs. The daily menu will be usually setup by consulting with Lady or Lord Berwick.
How to get here
Full address for Attingham Park is –
Atcham, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY4 4TP
Attingham Park postcode for satnav/gps – SY4 4TP
Accessed from the B4380, 4 miles south-east of Shrewsbury
Parking is free, 25 yards approximately from the visitor reception
Nearest station is Shrewsbury which is 5 miles away
Attingham Park Entrance Fees (whole property)
Group Adult: £9.50
Park, walled garden and playfield only
Group Adult: £5.70