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Surrey’s best National Trust properties to explore in 2023

Posted on December 29, 2022 by W.H. Cox
Surrey’s best National Trust properties to explore in 2023

Bordering Greater London in the Southwest, Surrey has been the county for the wealthy to establish their grand country houses and pleasure gardens.  Over the centuries several incredible houses and homes and pieces of land have been bequeathed to the National Trust and are maintained for public enjoyment.  The National Trust preserves coastline, houses, beaches, parkland, and natural spaces in the UK.  A yearly membership gives you discounted access to them, and a ticket to ride around the UK discovering all these places of history, heritage, and natural wonder. Surrey has a wide range of National Trust locations to visit all year round.  Some of the finest examples of garden landscaping can be found in this county and in some of these top properties to explore.  Here are five of Surrey’s best National Trust Properties. 

1-Polesden Lacey 

For a sumptuous day out, Polesden Lacey has all the decadence you would expect from a leading Edwardian socialite. Margaret Greville commissioned the architects of the Ritz hotel to orchestrate her interiors to be fit for royalty and the crème de la crème of society.  As her country retreat, Polesden Lacey showcased her collection of paintings, ceramics, and French furniture, all of which are on display today.  While the current financial forecast may have a grim outlook, you can dazzle your senses in this opulent establishment for the day.  Plus, the gardens have their own quality signatures for inspiration. The winter garden is inspired by Graham Stuart Thomas, and the herbaceous borders, rose gardens and stunning views complete the outdoor extravagance.  Set in 1,600 acres of wildlife and woodland there is flora and fauna all around. For the children, a new play area constructed from the estate woodlands ensures a fun nature connection amidst the splendour. 

2-Winkworth Arboretum 

For a full day of nature exploration, the Winkworth Arboretum is carefully curated to give something to everyone whatever the season.  A visionary tree collection offers visual surprises throughout the calendar and a lake, boathouse, and play area lend diversity to your reflective walk.   There are walks designed for people of all abilities which demonstrate the colours of the landscape throughout the year.  Bequeathed to the National Trust, this arboretum of Dr. Wilfred Fox is a testament to his dedicated work as an environmentalist.  Nowadays everyone can enjoy the Wetlands, Badgers Bowl, and the Azalea Steps.  The Arbor Tea Room can keep you refreshed, and the play area takes it to another level with a climbing wall, rope tunnels, and a firefighters’ pole.  Guaranteed to keep older children engaged. For the younger ones, the Owl and Fox benches create exciting landmarks on memorable long walks with the family. 

3-Claremont House 

While Claremont House is now a school, the Grade I listed gardens reveal much of its intricate history which involves some Royal residency. Not just a Capability Brown project, Claremont was also worked on by Charles Bridgeman, William Kent, and Sir John Vanbrugh.  The Belvedere Tower was designed for the Duke of Newcastle and the Camellia Terrace for Princess Charlotte and Prince Leopold. Complete with watermarks of different garden design ages you can explore the grottos, islands, animal statues, amphitheater, and lakes as your own pleasure garden today.  With wide-level pathways, you can navigate some of these outdoor features even in wet weather.  This stunning Surrey landscape is just south of Esher and waiting to be discovered. 

4-Hatchlands Park

Another Surrey marvel is Hatchlands Park.  Again, a treasury of paintings and design, and in particular a stunning collection of musical instruments.  Six restored rooms evoke the feel of the Georgian family house in the centre of the rolling grounds.  Robert Adam, a renowned architect designed the interiors with intricate and unique ceilings.  The Saloon, the Library and the Staircase Hall are all excellent examples of his expert influence.  Originally commissioned for the Boscawen family, with the Admiral in mind, the themes are seafaring and Neptunian.  The Cobbe Collection is over 40 keyboard instruments that have been owned or played by the world’s greatest composers. Included in the collection are a host of paintings.  Over time a music room, temple, and additional lodges have been added to the house, which has been generously open to the public to experience. Find out more about its history here.  With surrounding parkland, a play area, a secondhand bookshop, and food options it is another great day out in Surrey. 

5- Box Hill and Runnymede

For unbounded nature and panoramic views there is Box Hill. Part of the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.  A mixture of woodland, farmland and chalk downland, the riverside views and steppingstones make great features of this open space.  A ruined Old Fort from the 1890’s provides atmosphere and historical intrigue. For the children there is a natural play area hewn out of the natural materials of the woodlands.  A café provides refreshments including ice creams from 10am – 4 pm.  In addition to Box Hill, the National Trust details a range of other places of interest in the Surrey countryside.  The art installations at Runnymede feature two works of art by famous artists. Writ in Water creates an immersive space for contemplation and reflection.  The Jurors by Hew Locke marks the 800th anniversary of the sealing of the Magna Carta and raises questions about freedom and human rights in the open landscape. 

Moving to Surrey 

Fortunately, we live in a time where all these wonderful places are accessible and maintained by the National Trust.  If you are thinking of moving to Surrey, then you will have so much beautiful and refined countryside in your home county.  As the movers and shakers of yesteryear came to Surrey to build their visionary homes and pleasure gardens, you too can move your life to this great county.  Over the years we have helped so many people move to Surrey.  Obviously, there is a trend for Londoners to gradually move out to Surrey, but there are many other reasons that draw people to Surrey.  Looking at the wealth of English heritage and natural space that is suitable for families here it is no surprise that Surrey has timeless appeal for people to set up their forever home. 

WH Cox Surrey’s premier removals and storage company

WH Cox is a family run business that has been serving Surrey for decades. We provide a tailored service based on a home survey so we can estimate all the angles of your removal situation. When it comes to storage, we have various options which could make the move smoother and allow you various stop gaps along the way.  We even supply packing boxes free of charge ahead of the move as well as an optional packing service.  Our customers rate our Surrey removals and storage service with five stars, as you can read here. Similarly, our quality of service is guaranteed for our business removals.  Whether you are moving to or from overseas we have international transitions covered and can assist you on the way. If you are moving to Surrey, call the expert team who have all bases covered.  Get in touch through our contact form or reach out and give us a call today.