Penshurst Place and Gardens
The first recorded owner of the original 13th century house and estate was Sir Stephen de Penchester, an eminent royal servant whose tomb can be found in Penshurst church.
He was followed a half century later by Sir John de Pulteney, a prosperous London merchant and financier and four times elected Lord Mayor of London, who wanted to build a country establishment within a days ride of the city, where he could hunt and entertain on a grand scale.
At the heart of the mediaeval manor house lies the Baron's Hall, with its breathtaking 60 foot high chestnut roof, supported by satirical representations of peasants and estate workers at the time. The architectural additions made to Penshurst Place during its 670-year history have seen the house grow into an striking stately home that reveals at least eight different styles. The State Rooms are filled with a breathtaking collection acquired through the centuries by generations of the Sidney family. The West Solar or State Dining Room, part of the mediaeval building, contains an fascinating collection of family portraits, furniture and porcelain. The Queen Elizabeth Room, named after Queen Elizabeth I, who often held audience there during her many visits to Penshurst, has a extraordinary display of early upholstered furniture. Visitors can admire the beautiful tapestries in the Tapestry Room, then stroll along the superb Elizabethan Long Gallery, full of royal and family portraits, before descending to
the Nether Gallery with its fascinating array of arms and armour.
Apart from the fabulous collections in the house, the Toy Museum contains an amazing assortment of toys from bygone childhoods. They include toys played with by generations of Sidney children, while many belonged to Yootha Rose, stage designer, artist and Royal toymaker, and an avid collector of toys.
Another of Penshurst's splendours is the 11-acre formal walled garden, with records dating back to 1346. One of the oldest gardens in private ownership, it remains much as it was when constructed by Sir Henry Sidney in the Elizabethan era. Central to his grand project was the formation of the acclaimed Italian Garden, which involved shifting thousands of tons of earth and building an inventive system of walls and terraces. Today, the gardens at Penshurst Place offer a profusion of variety in form, foliage and bloom throughout the year. From spring flowering bulbs, through fragrant summer roses and exuberant herbaceous borders to mellow orchard fruits. The garden culminates in a vibrant blaze of autumnal colour before the winter starkness reveals its original shape and structure.
The spacious Gift Shop situated in a converted 19th century barn has everything for discerning shoppers, whether they are a visitor to Penshurst Place, or prefer to avoid the hustle and bustle of shopping in busy towns. The Gift Shop is open 10.30am - 6pm from March to October and 10.30am to 4.30pm from November to February.
Please check before visiting
Car & coach parking: Free.
Picnic areas: Venture Playground and car park.
Dogs: We regret dogs are not allowed into the grounds except guide dogs for the blind and hearing dogs for the deaf.
Visitors with disabilities are made most welcome. However, wheelchair access to the House and Garden Tea Room is limited. Please ask for assistance.
Our address is:
Penshurst Place & Gardens
Tel: 00 44 (0)1892 870307
Disclaimer: The information on this leisure attraction was presented with the best of intentions. Any reported errors will be corrected immediately. People interested in contacting the above leisure attraction should confirm for themselves the accuracy of any data presented.
Last Updated: 28 Apr 2015