Chatsworth

Designers put finishing touches to huge garden transformation at Chatsworth

A new ‘meadow glade’ bursting with thousands of flowers including Primula, Campanula, Ranunculus, Deschampsia, Succisa and many more has been created to mark the final major planting in Chatsworth’s biggest garden transformation for nearly 200 years.

A trio of Britain’s leading garden designers, Tom Stuart-Smith, Dan Pearson and James Hitchmough, have worked with Chatsworth’s Head of Gardens and Landscape, Steve Porter and his team for more than three years to redevelop the world famous 105-acre garden.

More than 300,000 plants, including hundreds of trees, have gone into the ground across a previously underdeveloped 15-acre area known as ‘Arcadia’. Major work has also been done in a further 10-acres that includes a remodelled Rock Garden, the Maze Borders, the Ravine, Trout Stream and Jack Pond.

Work continued right through the pandemic with a reduced garden team given a helping hand by the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire who were keen to develop a more sustainable future for the garden. During autumn 2020, around 95% of 70,000 perennials and bulbs were planted peat-free and were either grown in the open ground and transported bare root, or in biodegradable pots made from remoulded husks that are a by-product of the rice industry.

“The Duke and Duchess have often been in the garden helping out with planting, placing and watering, particularly when we were short-handed” says Head of Gardens and Landscape, Steve Porter. “They have been very involved and supportive of a more sustainable approach and that will be a key theme in the next round of changes in the garden.”

“We’ve been reducing the environmental impact of our work in all areas. The plants grown on site for Chatsworth’s shops are already completely peat-free and almost no pesticides or fungicides are used in the glasshouses – predatory bugs are released instead as part of an integrated pest control programme.”

James Hitchmough, based at the nearby University of Sheffield, has overseen the seeding of the new ‘meadow glade’ with thousands of perennial flowers, one of four new glades in Arcadia. New pathways take visitors deep into Arcadia’s heart, with earlier plantings already well established and flowering.

A wet glade known as the bog garden, contains more than 34,000 new plants and bulbs including 8000 Camassia grown onsite in Chatsworth’s own nursery. Drifts of more than 2000 Candelabra Primula in six different varieties are being planted as well as Iris, Rodgersia, Gunnera, swamp cypress (Taxodium), royal ferns and other plants able to thrive in damp conditions such as pond edges, stream banks or damp shady borders.

The overall plan for Arcadia by landscape architect Tom Stuart-Smith, supported by Gucci, saw 15-acres cleared for the planting of hundreds of new trees and the four meadow-like glades connected by woodland walks. A major new art installation called ‘Natural Course’ has been created by the Derbyshire artist Laura Ellen Bacon using more than 100 tonnes of local stone to build a monumental sculptural centrepiece.

One of the Duke of Devonshire’s favourite shrubs, Daphne, features strongly in Arcadia, particularly around seating areas because of its scent, while winter Helleborus in different colours and Primula in spring are other highlights.

In the Rock Garden, Iris are a standout flower among more than 12,000 new plants, which include many more grasses and perennials. Work along the Trout Stream has included some 7000 additional plants familiar to a woodland floor, such as Tiarella and Epimedium.

Redevelopment of the Trout Stream has been intimately connected to Dan Pearson’s creation of Chatsworth’s ‘Best in Show’ garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2015, which provided Dan with the conceptual inspiration for the new planting and seating.

The foundations of Chatsworth’s present garden and park were laid out by William Kent and Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown in the 18th century and Joseph Paxton in the 19th century.

The 105-acre garden is the product of nearly 500 years of careful cultivation and retains many early features, including the Canal Pond, Cascade and Duke’s Greenhouse. The famous waterworks include the 300-year-old Cascade, the Willow Tree Fountain and the impressive, gravity-fed Emperor Fountain, which reaches heights of up to 90m.

 

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Chatsworth House to celebrate 20 years of iconic festive exhibitions

Chatsworth is set to celebrate The Magic of Christmas with a look back over the 20 years since the house first opened for the festive season in 2001, to help revive Derbyshire’s tourism industry which was badly affected by foot and mouth disease that year.

Visitors will see nods to a variety of themes that have featured in the house over the past two decades, as they enjoy decorations designed to capture the magic of the festive season.

With the outbreak of foot and mouth disease in February 2001, the countryside was effectively closed to visitors until the summer, which had a huge impact on the whole visitor economy. At that time, Chatsworth normally closed from October to Easter but in 2001, the 11th Duke of Devonshire decided to keep the house open in the hope that it would encourage visitors to come into the area and help the local economy.

What was originally intended as a one-off Christmas season proved an instant hit, attracting thousands of visitors, and has become the biggest event in the calendar for the Derbyshire estate.

The return of the festive season this year following the restrictions on businesses due to the pandemic in 2020 and 2021 brings the story full circle, as hopes are high for a Christmas full of reflection, reminiscence and positivity, as the country continues on a path to recovery.

Since 2001, Christmas at Chatsworth has grown in size and scale, with displays becoming more elaborate each season making it a much anticipated and popular activity for thousands of people who return year after year keen to see what’s in store. With a different theme each year, Christmas at Chatsworth has become increasingly grand and more ambitious, involving dozens of specially grown Christmas trees, yards of great garlands, and copious amounts of fairy lights.

This year’s standout feature looks set to be the snow installation in the Inner Court. A newly installed lamppost will bring to mind the snowy scenes from Narnia, while other rooms on the Christmas route will evoke seasons past from the traditions of the Victorian era and the world of Charles Dickens to the imaginary worlds of Mr Toad and Alice in Wonderland.

Following its successful introduction last year, there will once again be a festive light installation in the garden to make a Christmas visit last even longer. Visitors can enjoy an illuminated walk round the garden, with atmospheric lighting bringing a festive sparkle on a route past the Emperor Fountain, Rock Garden and the Cascade surrounded by hundreds of glowing lights.

Tickets are on sale now with the timed slots still in place to help manage the flow of visitors at all times. This year will also see the return of the famous Chatsworth Christmas market, with over 100 stalls offering a wide range of Christmas gifts and decorations taking place on Lodge Hill next to the house from 6-24 November 2021.

Over in the farmyard, there will be a variety of festive activities, with more details to follow. Early booking is recommended.

For information and advance booking, visit www.chatsworth.org

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Dazzling projections to ‘shine a light’ on iconic Derbyshire landmarks

Spectacular large-scale projections will light up two Derbyshire landmarks in a new night-time attraction celebrating the county’s rich heritage this autumn.

Visitors will be able to see Derbyshire’s heritage and history of innovation brought to life in ‘Shine A Light’ – an extravaganza of light and sound taking place on four dates in October against the impressive backdrops of Chatsworth House and Cromford Mills.

Delivered by internationally-renowned Derbyshire-born video projection artists Illuminos, Shine A Light brings together awe-inspiring illuminations and projections in a visually stunning display inspired by Voices From The Peak – a celebration of the county in sound created by local poet and performer Mark Gwynne Jones to celebrate the Peak District National Park’s 70th birthday earlier this year.

Providing fun and entertainment for the whole family, the one-of-a-kind experiences have been commissioned by Derbyshire County Council to celebrate Derbyshire’s rich history and heritage while boosting the visitor economy in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Each outdoor event is a fusion of visuals, music and sound culminating in a large-scale moving animation projected onto the building every 20 minutes throughout each evening at:

  • Chatsworth, the home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, on Friday 22 October and Saturday 23 October from 6.30pm.
  • Cromford Mills, home of Sir Richard Arkwright’s first mill complex, in the UNESCO Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, on Thursday 28 October and Friday 29 October from 6.30pm.

Visitors to the Chatsworth experience will be greeted by atmospheric lighting which will illuminate the route to the South Lawn, passing some of the most impressive features in the Chatsworth Garden. A large-scale moving animation will be projected onto the spectacular South Front of Chatsworth House and there will be a range of hot and cold drinks, snacks and treats available.

At Cromford Mills, visitors will have the unique opportunity to see the historic buildings, watercourse and mill yard beautifully illuminated by night. Two buildings will be used as the backdrop to the animation in the Grade I listed mill complex, which is currently celebrating its 250th anniversary, and food and drink will be available in the mill yard and at the canal-side setting of Wheatcroft’s Wharf.

Tickets are £8 for adults and £6 per child (aged 4-16 inclusive, free for 3 and under).

For more details and to book tickets, please visit www.visitpeakdistrict.com/shine-a-light.

Derbyshire County Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Strategic Leadership, Culture, Tourism and Climate Change Councillor Barry Lewis said: “We’re proud to be able to help support these unique experiences which will provide excellent entertainment for tourists and residents alike.

“We’ve brought together internationally-known projection artists and a renowned local poet and storyteller to create these fascinating events which are designed for people of all ages to enjoy.

“It is vital we support the local visitor economy to recover following coronavirus pandemic and we hope in future years to extend ‘Shine A Light’ to more venues across our county.”

Jo Dilley, Managing Director of Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire, said: “Derbyshire is fortunate to have some of the world’s most significant heritage attractions and ‘Shine A Light’ offers the fantastic opportunity to see history brought to life in spectacular style against the backdrops of Chatsworth and Cromford Mills.

“Better still, these night-time displays offer the perfect excuse to enjoy all the Peak District & Derbyshire has to offer in autumn, from cosy places to stay to unique places to visit and great local food and drink, supporting the recovery of local businesses in the process. These events will be very popular, and we urge everyone to get their tickets as soon as possible!”

Marketing Peak District and Derbyshire supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Chatsworth Launches Recruitment Drive For Hospitality Staff

Chatsworth has launched a recruitment drive to fill more than 30 hospitality roles in its cafes, pub and restaurants across the Derbyshire estate.

A selection of full and part-time positions are available for immediate starts in the hotels and restaurants, working in both the kitchens and front of house.

The recruitment drive follows the launch of a professional training academy to support new employees at Devonshire Hotels & Restaurants Group. The Devonshire Hospitality Academy will welcome its first students in autumn 2021 for its in-house training programme, which will lead to a recognised industry qualification at Level 2 Apprenticeship. Crucially, on successful completion of the course, permanent full time jobs will automatically offered.

In an effort to attract candidates and highlight the exciting career opportunities on offer, two Recruitment Days are taking place at Chatsworth on Thursday 9 September and Saturday 11 September.

Every attendee will be guaranteed an interview with a member of the senior hospitality team with a range of short term part-time seasonal roles on offer to longer-term opportunities with for those looking to build a career.

Richard Palmer, Devonshire Hotels MD, is particularly interested in finding people looking to make a longer term commitment and take advantage of the 18-month industry recognised training programme on offer.

“The loss of the labour force from Europe and the impact of the pandemic on the hospitality sector being one of the last to re-open has created a ‘perfect storm’ impacting on our ability to recruit and find people with the right skills.

“We want to get across the message that they are lots of fantastic careers in hospitality and we can help support people to realise those aspirations. I’m an example of this as I actually started within the Hotels at Bolton Abbey as a waiter and am now heading up the hotels and restaurants group.

“We’re keen to hear from people who may be coming to the end of furlough and are looking for a career change as well as those who may be starting out and looking for a job with excellent prospects.”

As well as Richard himself, the Chatsworth team is full of inspiring stories of those who have worked their way up with the support and training on offer from James Adlington who started as a casual worker to now managing the acclaimed Burlington Restaurant in Yorkshire in just six years to David Milward and Steph Shirt who both started as apprentices and are now Chef at Chatsworth and Head Baker at Chatsworth Estate Farm Shop respectively.

Richard added: “If you’re approachable and passionate, we would love you to become part of our team.”

As well as the guaranteed interview, attendees will hear from the senior hospitality team about working for Chatsworth. Roles are currently available at the Cavendish Hotel, the Devonshire Arms in Beeley and the Devonshire Arms in Pilsley.

Anyone interested in finding out more is advised to register their interest with their preferred date and time slot as soon as possible as places are limited. A drink and slice of homemade cake is thrown in to seal the deal.

  • Thursday 9 September | 2.30pm, 4pm, 5,30pm
  • Saturday 11 September | 10.30am, 12pm, 3pm
  • Location: Cavendish Restaurant, The Stables, Chatsworth, DE45 1PP
  • Email hr@devonshiregroup.co.uk to register.

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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“More Endangered than a Giant Panda” – Rare breed foal bred at Chatsworth

A critically endangered Suffolk Punch foal is now home at Chatsworth and charming visitors and employees alike as the estate’s rare breeds programme bears its first fruit.

Eugenie, the Chatsworth Farmyard mare successfully gave birth in April to a beautiful colt foal, who has been named Huxley. The pair have now returned from the stud farm to take up residence in the farmyard.

The Rare Breeds Survival Trust considers Suffolk Punch horses to be critically endangered. There are fewer than 500 purebred Suffolk horses registered in the UK now, and Eugenie is one of only 72 female Suffolk punches, making them more endangered than the Giant Panda. Huxley is one of the finest colts born this year and is a significant addition to the breeding programme.

Farmyard team member Rachel Kearsey said: “The farmyard team are thrilled to welcome back Eugenie and Huxley. Eugenie was pleased to return to the farmyard – whinnying with excitement when the trailer bought her back into the yard.

“Huxley has been a huge hit with visitors. He was very shy to begin with but his cheeky personality is now showing through.”

Huxley and Eugenie spend their day in the bottom yard at the farmyard entrance and spend the evenings out in the farmyard paddocks.

Chatsworth Farmyard is home to a number of the country’s rarest breeds of livestock and equines, including Suffolk Punch horses, Shire horses, Albion cattle, Gloucestershire Old Spot pigs, Bagot goats and Cream Legbar chickens, with British Landrace pigs and Eriskay ponies.

Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST) awarded RBST accreditation to Chatsworth Farmyard earlier this year, recognising its important contribution to the conservation of some the rarest livestock and equine breeds native to the UK.

RBST is the national charity that works to secure the future of rare breeds of native livestock and equines. Chatsworth Farmyard is now part of the 25-strong network of RBST accredited farm parks which take part in crucial conservation programmes, manage special breeding groups, and support education about rare breeds and why they matter.

While Chatsworth is looking forward to being able to welcome more people back to the estate following the easing of restrictions on 19 July, the health and wellbeing of visitors and colleagues remains its number one priority. Key measures will include requiring visitors aged 11 years and upwards to wear a face covering in the house and encouraging use in all other indoor areas, such as the restaurants and gift shops

Chatsworth Farmyard and Adventure Playground is open daily. For advance tickets and opening times, please visit www.chatsworth.

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Work Placements For Young People On Offer at Chatsworth Under New Kickstart Scheme

Work placements have been created across the Chatsworth Estate under the Government’s new Kickstart Scheme set up to help young people at risk of long-term unemployment.

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to employers to create new jobs for young people aged 16 to 24 who are receiving Universal Credit. To support the national ‘Plan for Jobs’ scheme launched by the Department of Work and Pensions, employers must create new high quality employment opportunities that would otherwise not be available. These can either be entirely new roles or existing roles but additional to the employer’s normal workforce.

The Devonshire Group, which comprises Chatsworth, Bolton Abbey and the wider estate operations has created a range of exciting six-month placements including: gardeners, farmyard and adventure playground assistants, drystone waller, collections assistant and commis chef.

Devonshire Group Engagement and Development Co-ordinator, Nathan Fairhead said: “We are proud to be supporting the Kickstart scheme to provide young people in our communities the opportunity to gain valuable work experience. We are eager to do what we can to help young people through the extremely challenging context that the Covid-19 pandemic has created for jobseekers. We’re looking forward to welcoming our first Kickstart colleagues to these new roles and equipping them for their future careers.

“We have identified a variety of exciting opportunities across the Devonshire Group and our management team have been keen to support the scheme. Some will be roles that are the same or similar to roles already in place but will be additional to existing numbers. Other posts are entirely new such as placements in Sustainability, Retail Efficiency Support and Forestry.”

All the candidates will be closely supported by their department managers to ensure they receive relevant ‘on the job’ training and paired with a ‘buddy’ for personal one-to-one support. They will also be offered employability skills training to be delivered remotely by Buxton and Leek College working in partnership with the Devonshire Group.

Many of the 33 placements are already live with several more across the Devonshire Hotels and Restaurants Group in Derbyshire and Yorkshire due to be posted shortly.

Candidates can apply for live placements via Job Centre Plus, who will then pass the application to the employer.

For more information, go to https://kickstart.campaign.gov.uk/ or speak to a Job Centre Plus work coach.

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Ashgate Hospicecare launches Forget-Me-Not Appeal

Ashgate Hospicecare has launched a new way for supporters to celebrate, mourn and remember their loved ones with its Forget-Me-Not Appeal.

As part of the appeal, which is sponsored by Graysons Solicitors, people can make a suggested donation of £25 for a custom made, beautifully crafted forget-me-not flower, to pay a lasting tribute to friends and family.

The striking purple flowers, each measuring 45cm in length, have been made by the Oswestry-based British Ironwork Centre.

The limited-edition flowers will form a display from 8th to 30th June, within the picturesque grounds of Chatsworth.

Jack Wood, Head of Fundraising at Ashgate Hospicecare, said: “The last year has been a difficult time for everyone. One of the most heartbreaking aspects of COVID is how it has kept people apart, particularly at times when people needed each other more than ever.

“It took away the opportunity for people to say their final goodbyes, to be by their bedside and to share in those sacred last moments. This is extremely difficult for those left behind, as they look for a way to process their experiences and navigate this new world of grief.

“That is why we are proud to be able to offer our community a meaningful way to remember their loved ones and to provide them with the time to reflect.

“A forget-me-not flower can be dedicated to anyone; they don’t need to have accessed the support and services of Ashgate Hospicecare.”

“The hospice allowed Julie to spend her final moments in peace.”

Steve Griffiths, 67, from Winster in the Peak District, will be dedicating a forget-me-not in memory of his wife, Julie, who experienced ‘exceptional’ care at Ashgate Hospicecare’s inpatient unit after being diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare type of lung cancer.

Steve said: “The hospice allowed Julie to spend her final moments in peace. The last thing I’d want was for her to have an unpleasant death; she’d suffered enough already. Ashgate gave her a very calming and peaceful end to her life and I’m enormously grateful for this.

“That’s the marvellous thing about Ashgate – it takes the stress away so you can focus on creating those final memories together. The team are always there and make everything as easy as possible for you. Whatever we needed was there, whenever we needed it.

“In tribute to Julie, I’ve chosen to support Ashgate Hospicecare’s Forget-Me-Not Appeal and dedicate a keepsake flower in memory of her. I know Julie would have loved to have walked through the stunning grounds at Chatsworth to see the meadow of flowers glistening in the sun.”

Visit the forget-me-not display at Chatsworth

Thousands of forget-me-nots will form a display at Chatsworth, home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.

The Duke of Devonshire and President of Ashgate Hospicecare, said: “We are delighted to welcome the local community to Chatsworth to pause in a moment of reflection together.

“Undoubtedly, this has been an extremely challenging year, which makes this display ever more poignant, while raising much needed funds for our much-loved local hospice.

“Money raised from appeals such as this one, ensures the continuation of the exceptional care and services that Ashgate delivers to thousands of families across North Derbyshire.”

The suggested donation for a forget-me-not is £25 and money raised will be used to fund the hospice’s round-the-clock specialist end-of-life care.

To dedicate a flower, visit https://www.ashgatehospicecare.org.uk/forget-me-not/ or call the fundraising team on 01246 567250.

Supporters will be able to collect their flower, or have them posted to them in July, once the public display is removed.

Ashgate Hospicecare and Chatsworth support the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Medieval Masterpieces ‘coming home’ as Chatsworth House reopens

Two medieval masterpieces are returning to Chatsworth after more than 60 years and will go on display to visitors for one season only as the house reopens on Tuesday 18 May 2021.

At almost 600 years old and measuring more than 11 x 4 metres each, the Devonshire Hunting Tapestries are one of the largest pictorial representations of any kind from their period and the only great 15th century hunting tapestries to survive. Depicting medieval scenes of fabulously dressed noble men and women hunting in imaginary landscapes, they are believed to have been made in Arras, France between 1425-1450.

Having been closed for more than six months, the house will reopen its doors to ‘Life Stories’, a new exhibition that shares stories about the fascinating lives of people associated with Chatsworth through the placement of nine paired portraits and objects. Life Stories will run throughout the house before visitors reach the last room, the magnificent Sculpture Gallery, where the Devonshire Hunting Tapestries will be hung on the walls.

The tapestries belonged to the Devonshire family for more than 500 years before they were accepted by HM Government in lieu of tax payable on the estate of the 10th Duke of Devonshire. They were allocated to the Victoria and Albert Museum where they have been housed ever since. Chatsworth is working in partnership with the V&A to bring the tapestries back to the house for this eight-month display.

The Duke of Devonshire: “It is a great privilege to welcome these tapestries back to Chatsworth; they had been part of the Collection for very many years until they were given in partial lieu of death duties in the 1950s. Since then they have been superbly looked after at the V&A Museum and we are delighted that they are allowing us to enjoy them here in Derbyshire once again for a few months in 2021.”

Tapestries were enormously costly objects in the Middle Ages and therefore the preserve of only the wealthiest families. The details of the tapestries give an insight into medieval life, but the action is set in imaginary landscapes. Hunting tapestries, with scenes of forests, people and animals, were a popular subject, transforming the cold and draughty interiors of medieval castles and mansions into forest glades.

The ‘Life Stories’ exhibition (18 May – 3 October 2021) includes the pairing of the artist Elisabeth Frink’s Tribute I with Angela Conner’s portrait of Frink herself; Alicia Paz’s painting Courage Calls to Courage Everywhere is connected to Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, to highlight her interest in politics, science and poetry; while Henry VIII’s rosary, Natasha’s Daintry’s 2015 ceramic work Skin Deep, and a recreation of Bess of Hardwick’s necklace of 1000 pearls, made by leading Derbyshire based jewellers C W Sellors, also feature. Focusing on the traces of lives in the house, the exhibition presents objects in new ways, demonstrating how past figures continue to resonate in our lives today.

The house completes a phased reopening at Chatsworth with the garden, farmyard and adventure playground already open to visitors.

Tickets are now on sale and must be booked in advance. Each area of Chatsworth will reopen in line with government guidance on social distancing, household mixing and travel restrictions applicable at the time.

Indoor restaurants will also reopen on 18 May while most other restrictions will be lifted from 21 June.

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

 

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Chatsworth Farmyard Awarded Rare Breeds Accreditation 

Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST) has awarded RBST accreditation to Chatsworth Farmyard, recognising its important contribution to the conservation of some the rarest livestock and equine breeds native to the UK.

Chatsworth Farmyard is home to a number of the country’s rarest breeds of livestock and equines, including Suffolk Punch horses, Shire horses, Gloucestershire Old Spot pigs, Bagot goats and Cream Legbar chickens, with British Landrace pigs and Eriskay ponies due to join them soon.

The award comes as the family-friendly farmyard and children’s adventure playground reopened (13 April) to visitors after several months closed in line with Covid restrictions. The garden is also open and the house will reopen on 18 May.

The farmyard at Chatsworth in Derbyshire has provided agricultural education and entertainment for almost half a century, and the estate has a longstanding connection with RBST. Duchess Deborah, mother of the current Duke of Devonshire, served as RBST President and the Cavendish family are valued ambassadors for native breed conservation.

RBST is the national charity that works to secure the future of rare breeds of native livestock and equines. Chatsworth Farmyard now becomes part of the 25-strong network of RBST accredited farm parks which take part in crucial conservation programmes, manage special breeding groups, and support education about rare breeds and why they matter.

RBST Chief Executive Christopher Price: “Native breeds have an important place in a future for farming where sustainable production goes hand in hand with the natural environment, but they are also an irreplaceable part of our rural heritage. For centuries these animals ploughed our fields, took our soldiers to war and powered our wool industry, it would be devastating if they disappeared, and Chatsworth Farmyard has been doing crucial work to support the survival of some of our rarest native breeds. I am thrilled to welcome them to the network of RBST-accredited farm parks and I look forward to working with the team.”

Melissa Underwood, Chatsworth Farmyard Manager: “Since joining Chatsworth Farmyard in September 2020 we have been increasing the numbers of rare breeds kept here. One of my best moments has been to discover that the Albion breed of cattle originated here in Bakewell. They were an obvious choice for us to have here and we hope to use them in our milking demonstrations later in the year. We were lucky to be able to source our two females and look forward to welcoming their calves in the summer. I am passionate about rare breeds and their conservation and look forward to sharing our journey and exciting new breeding programmes with our visitors.”

Visit www.chatsworth.org/farmyard-playground to find out more about the Farmyard’s reopening and how to book tickets.

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Images provided by Chatsworth House Trust

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Chatsworth to mark reopening with display of medieval masterpieces

Chatsworth has announced a phased reopening that will throw open the gates of its world- famous 105-acre garden, family friendly farmyard & adventure playground and finally, the gilded doors of its magnificent house, home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.

Starting on Monday 29 March, when the ‘stay at home’ rule ends, the garden will be open to visitors, with the farmyard and adventure playground to follow on 13 April and the house on 18 May. Tickets are now on sale and must be booked in advance. Each area of Chatsworth will reopen in line with government guidance on social distancing, household mixing and travel restrictions applicable at the time.

The Duke of Devonshire: “After many months with the house closed and largely empty, the Duchess and I are absolutely thrilled at the prospect of being able to reopen Chatsworth and welcome back all our visitors.

“This last year has been an incredibly difficult time for many people, but it is wonderful to be planning for the lifting of restrictions, and we look forward to seeing people enjoying a visit to the Peak District. I’m particularly excited that we have a pair of medieval masterpieces to reveal to our visitors when the house reopens in May. We have added many thousands of new plants and lots of trees in the garden during the past 12 months, and it now looks as good as I can ever remember.”

Huge new plantings, landscaping and sculpture installations have formed part of the biggest transformation project in the garden for nearly 200 years. Since lockdown began in 2020 work has continued on a 25-acre redevelopment area that includes a remodelled Rock Garden, the Maze borders, the Ravine, the Trout Stream and the Jack Pond.

Following the garden, from 13 April the family friendly farmyard and children’s adventure playground will reopen, as well as the estate’s gift shops and outdoor catering.

Finally, the house will reopen to the public on 18 May, welcoming visitors to its splendid state rooms, a new exhibition called ‘Life Stories’, and two stunning medieval artworks on display in the Sculpture Gallery throughout 2021.

Indoor restaurants will also reopen on 18 May while most other restrictions will be lifted from 21 June.

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Images taken by Chatsworth House Trust

 

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Chatsworth supplies hundreds of ready meals to the vaccination frontline

Chefs at the Chatsworth Estate have begun creating ready meals for distribution to Covid vaccination centres across Derbyshire, with hundreds of meals being delivered to frontline workers every week.

Hot food for hard working volunteers and staff includes Chatsworth favourites such as lasagne, macaroni cheese, cottage pie made with local beef, and mushroom and leek risotto among others.

Instead of preparing meals for visitors to Chatsworth, for the past few weeks chefs in the Carriage House Café kitchen have been cooking ready meals to provide vaccination staff working long hours with fuel for the fight against Covid. Chatsworth’s delivery drivers have been dropping off meals at destinations including Chesterfield Royal, St. Oswald’s in Ashbourne, Royal Derby and others among the county’s 24 vaccination centres.

Derbyshire has shown that it is leading the nation’s vaccination roll-out – in one week recently, the country vaccinated the second highest proportion of eligible residents in the whole of England.

Chris Baily Jones, Head of Catering at Chatsworth: “The vaccination drive in Derbyshire and elsewhere is absolutely vital in making us all safe for a way out of lockdown. We’re determined to do our bit to support Derbyshire NHS and all the people working such long hours to get as many people vaccinated as quickly as possible.”

Ready meals for Derbyshire vaccination centres has been made possible with funding from Chatsworth Estate alongside personal contributions from a number of individuals at Chatsworth. The Devonshire Group community forum, which includes Chatsworth, is chaired by Lord Burlington, son of the Duke of Devonshire, and was set up at the start of the Covid pandemic to reach out and support local communities.

A large number of charitable organisations are supported by the Devonshire Group through donations of money, items and complimentary tickets, and by offering savings on commercial rates. In 2019, charitable giving across the Devonshire Group amounted to £334,452.

For more information on Chatsworth and the community, visit https://www.chatsworth.org/about-chatsworth/our-shared-future/

Chatsworth supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through  Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Images supplied by the Chatsworth House Trust

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