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Delights of summer at Ickworth

Ickworth is a truly magical place to visit in summer. The gardens provide a tranquil place to relax, while the flower meadow down at the Walled Garden bursts into colour with cornflowers and poppies.

The parkland offers cool and shady walks with fantastic views of the estate. And in the middle of it all sits Ickworth House. Magnificent and extraordinary, it was built around two hundred years ago to delight and impress and still does. As sunshine washes the columned walls and mighty dome of the huge circular Rotunda, stand in the Italianate Garden, look back at the mansion flanked by wings that sweep to each side on an epic scale, and be transported from rural Suffolk to classical Italy.

ickworthEnjoy the summer season at Ickworth. Why not take an exhilarating family cycle ride around the park? Or get fit on the trim trail? Bring your own family picnic and explore the children’s playground? Or enjoy a guided walk to learn more about Ickworth’s history and wildlife. Then come and sample all kinds of tasty treats in our West Wing and Porter’s Lodge cafés or afternoon tea in the Orangery. You’ll be spoilt for choice!

Kids will love messing about on ‘Out and about Wednesdays’ throughout the summer holidays. All kinds of activities can be ticked off their ‘50 Things challenge’ – geocaching, snail racing, kite flying, leaf rubbing and lots of fun games, arts and crafts.

Indoors, the Rotunda has a fresh look with our new Ickworth Treasures exhibition. You can discover more about the controversial and eccentric Earl Bishop who designed the iconic Rotunda in the 18th century as both a family home and showcase for his great collection of art. Sit back, relax and enjoy works by Titian, Velazquez and Gainsborough, or join our storytellers as they share tales about the Earl Bishop’s colourful life. His vision gave us the Ickworth we know today.

Our Living History days continue to delight. Join the servants of the 1930s as they prepare picnics, get ready for a trip to the Newmarket Races, or prepare for harvest. Or find out more about Ickworth’s rare books with an expert and learn how we care for our treasured collections.

Outdoor theatre makes a welcome return this summer in a setting that has been inspiring people for two centuries. We begin with Twelfth Night on Sunday 28 June. Join the Lord Chamberlain’s Men for the Bard’s best-loved romantic comedy, a joyous tale of love and laughter acted out in traditional Shakespearean style.

Then, on Saturday 1 August, Ickworth’s dreams of far-away places go the extra mile with Boxtree Production’s Around the World in 80 Days. Let Jules Verne’s hero Phileas Fogg take you on a hilarious adventure-packed journey as he and his valet Passepartout attempt to circumnavigate the world on a wager. On Sunday 30 August, we celebrate the bold and unconventional personality of Ickworth with a hilarious new open air adaptation of Pride & Prejudice. Jane Austen’s witty and romantic masterpiece gets the full Pantaloons treatment with Lizzy and Darcy as you’ve never seen them before! And on Saturday 12 September, get your flags ready for an evening of Last Night of the Proms with the Bury St Edmunds Concert Band.

See our www.nationaltrust.org.uk/Ickworth, Facebook: IckworthNT, Twitter: @IckworthNT for more information.

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