Please note that until 1 January 2019 the only access to Petworth House is for A Georgian Christmas where selected rooms are open to view, decorated for the season. Entry to the house is free flow and there is no need to book. Return from 2 January 2019 for the Royal Academicians display when we will be highlighting aspects of the collection once more.
Admission charges apply. Free for National Trust members.
Bringing the outdoors in, see selected state rooms opulently dressed for a party, and decorated with lashings of garlands, kissing boughs, and mountains of mistletoe and greenery from the Petworth estate.
During this immersive experience, discover an elaborately dressed dining table laid for a banquet. Dotted with show-stopping centrepieces of foliage, grapes and pineapples, luxuries of the Georgian era, the feast sits beside a grand log-burning fireplace to keep away the crisp winter air.
Take part in parlour games popular at the time and settle down with a game of cards in the Somerset Room. Haven’t booked your pantomime this year? Put on an impromptu performance on the Petworth stage with various scripts on offer or try your hand at puppet theatre, both Georgian pastimes.
The Marble Hall of Petworth turns in to a grand ballroom this Christmas complete with carols and live performances at selected times. Visitors can have a go at composing a masterpiece with instruments available to play. Around the room see the statues collected by the 3rd Earl of Egremont atmospherically lit and play with some traditional children’s gifts lying in wait for the children of the 3rd Earl and Elizabeth Ilive.
Make sure to steer clear of the Estate Offices, William Tyler, a past House Steward at Petworth will be lurking, looking for any unpaid rent!
Bringing the whole occasion together are staff and volunteers dressed in Georgian inspired clothing made by the sewing team of Petworth House.
Aside from the projection of William Tyler, you might see a butler, a housemaid or even the 3rd Earl of Egremont and Elizabeth Ilive walking through the state rooms. After you explain to them what photography is, they might even be willing to oblige.
Born in 1751, George O’Brien Wyndham is recognised at Petworth as a great patron of the English landscape artist JMW Turner. Elizabeth Ilive became the 3rd Earl’s mistress in 1785 but it wasn’t until 1801 that they married.