Favourite accessible National Trust properties
16th March 2018
This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.
The National Trust is beloved by people across the UK and many people have positive memories of visiting certain properties or patronising the amazing tea rooms attached to many of the sites. With properties of every architectural style, sections of coastlines, areas of natural beauty and even pubs in their keeping, there is sure to be a property to suit every taste.
The sheer wealth of sites in the National Trust’s keeping can leave people feeling overwhelmed, especially when choosing the next place to visit. There are lots of ways many of these products have been adapted to suit those with limited mobility who may rely on mobility scooters, stairlifts or just don’t feel confident walking long distances.
Just outside of Falmouth and buried in the heart of Cornwall, Trelissick offers the manor house and art gallery as well as a crofters café that is a great place to stop for a taste of the area with its local and seasonal menu.
The estate came to the National Trust fairly recently so it is modestly furnished, but despite that, it is a wonderful example of a Regency Country House. Clair Hall from the Tin Box Traveller Blog recounts her own experience at Trelissick:
“The real star of the show is the view across the estuary. All of the southerly facing rooms have magnificent panoramic vistas and some have viewing stations set up with binoculars and maps. As ever, the volunteers around the house were keen to engage with visitors pointing out areas of interest and answering questions. Tin Box Tot was intrigued by the different sizes and shapes of binoculars.”
Trelissick is accessible, with mobility parking, a mobility toilet and a map denoting which routes are accessible in the grounds.
Waddesdon Manor- Buckinghamshire
Waddesdon Manor is hard to overlook as it is what would once have been called ‘a country pile’. The vast estate is located just outside Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire and visitors and locals alike delight in everything this incredible house and garden has to offer.
Built in the style of a French Renaissance Chateaux of the Loire Valley, Waddesdon Manor was the home of Ferdinand Rothschild. During the Second World War, the house was home to children evacuated from London and there were up to 100 children under the age of five residing at the house at this time.
The estate has a restaurant and a stables café along with a manor shop and special tours available for groups. It also provides wheelchairs on a first come first serve basis, it has accessible bathrooms and though some of the house and gardens are not accessible to wheelchair users, these are clearly specified.
Donna Wishart from the blog What the Red Head Said tells of the highlight of her visit:
“Just before we headed home I remembered a staff member mentioning an aviary and we went off to investigate. I have never seen a more beautiful aviary and the children loved looking at the birds. It was so different to anything on other National Trust sites we’ve visited and so unexpected – definitely worth looking at if you visit Waddesdon Manor.
“At the end of our trip another little bus took us back to the car park and we headed off on the rest of my Birthday adventure. Waddesdon Manor was beautiful to look at, lovely to explore and had a lot to keep children amused. We’ll definitely be visiting again in the future.”
Stourhead – Wiltshire
Though Stourhead may be more famous for its beautiful restful grounds, there is a property at this site that is worth a peek. The Palladian Villa was one of the first of its kind built in England and was designed by the Scottish architect Colen Campbell.
For those wishing to visit Stourhead who struggle with limited mobility, the National Trust do recommend advance booking to ensure their stair climber is available. However, there is disabled parking and toilets available on the site, alongside the accessible shop and restaurant. The grounds boast accessible gravel paths.
Clare from the Flip Flops or Wellies blog was delighted when she visited:
“Stourhead is most famous for its beautiful lakeside walk. In the autumn the huge variety of trees including maples, acers, tulip trees and beech turn glorious colours throughout September and October, making this one of the best places in the country to see an autumn display.
“The setting around the lake alongside a range of monuments such as the Palladium bridge and miniature versions of the Temple of Apollo and the Pantheon is lovely. The short walk around the lake is about 1 mile on well-maintained level paths. You may be able to make use of the buggy service operated by volunteers if walking is a problem. There is also a minibus service to shuttle people between the gardens, house and the main entrance as there is quite a steep walk involved. The route can also be easily extended within and outside the lake area.”
Lyme Park – Cheshire
Famous for its appearance in the Pride and Prejudice, this majestic building offers an enriching experience to visitors of all ages. It also has some of the most important artefacts in the entire National Trust collections including the only surviving copy of the Sarum Missal that has been kept largely intact- this makes it a must-see for history buffs.
With blue badge parking, level access to both house and gardens, a shuttle bus for those with mobility problems and level toilets, this estate is geared to be accessible to all visitors. Stacey from One Small Human blog was stunned by her visit to Lyme Park:
“As members, we could have accessed both the house and garden, but with only a couple of hours to use after Crow Wood and a baby and toddler in tow, we stuck with the gardens. These gardens are absolutely spectacular and even with a couple of hours there, we didn’t come close to seeing it all.”