This summer the historic Speke Hall is bringing Tudors to life, with a full roster of outdoor family trails and a new exhibition.
Families are set to descend on the National Trust’s Speke Hall over the coming months, and there are plenty of old favourites and new surprises to be discovered in their just-announced events programme happening up until 1st September.
New for this summer is an outdoor trail featuring famous characters from Tudor times, including Queen Elizabeth I and William Shakespeare. Families are invited to join young Will and Anne Norris to go on an adventure through the gardens to find all six ‘Trailblazing Tudors’, with a new character sticker to collect each week and themed craft activities on Mondays.
Families can also enjoy the Giant Childe of Hale woodland trail, a mind-boggling hedge maze and free sports every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the summer holidays. On 18th August, an outdoor theatre performance of The Magic of Wonderland will cast a spell over the gardens, with tickets available to purchase online or by telephone.
“Summer is always a fantastic time to visit Speke Hall,” says Catherine Jackman, Visitor Experience Manager, “not only because our gardens are looking their best, but because there’s so much to do for families. We especially can’t wait to transport visitors back to the 16th century with our Tudor-themed events and activities.”
Also new for this year is ‘Tension, Turmoil and Traitors: The Story of Tudor Speke’, a new exhibition revealing the life or death secrets kept by those who lived at the iconic black and white mansion in Elizabethan times.
A highlight of the exhibition is a surround sound audio-visual recreation of a Catholic priest hunt. Visitors can hear and see a priest escaping from soldiers into the hall’s original priest hole, a hidden roof space untouched for over four centuries. The exhibition is open to explore between Tuesdays and Sundays throughout the summer holidays, with a family trail available for children to enjoy.
Speke Hall’s Home Farm restaurant is open every day for hot and cold food, cakes, snacks and drinks. There is also the Stables Tea Room to visit and an ice cream kiosk serving award-winning Cheshire Farm Ice Cream, as well as several picnic areas.
Entrance to Speke Hall is free to National Trust members and under 5s, while normal entry prices apply to non-members. Free on-site parking is available.
Full events listings
20th July – 1st September
Join young Will and Anne Norris in their summer adventure in search of mischief and merriment around their gardens. What sixteenth century superstars will you encounter along the way?
Sunday 21st July & 25th August
Archery Taster Sessions
Fancy yourself as the next Robin Hood? Challenge the whole family to see who has the best aim, while learning a brand-new skill. £1.00 per go for 6 arrows.
Sunday 28th July, 25th August, 22nd September
Trust10 is a free monthly trail run open to both members and non-members. Try the 5k or 10k route and take on a fresh running challenge in a beautiful landscape. FREE
Every Tuesday & Thursday, 23rd July – 29th August
Summer of Sport
Try your hand at a new sport in the gardens of Speke Hall with tennis, football, athletics and more on offer to all ability levels. FREE
Wednesday-Sunday until 3rd November
Tension, Turmoil and Traitors: The Story of Tudor Speke
Not every rebellion begins with a battle cry… Discover the turmoil of Elizabethan England and the life or death secrets that were kept within the walls of Speke Hall in a fascinating new indoor exhibition.
Wednesday-Sunday until 3rd November
Trenchers, Testers and Teeth indoor trail
How would you clean your Tudor teeth? What would you eat for your Tudor tea? Discover a truly Tudor life at Speke Hall with this fun indoor trail.
Thursday 1st August
Outdoor theatre: Much Ado About Nothing by The Three-Inch Fools
Enjoy Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing with Speke Hall as a scenic backdrop this summer. Adult £14 Child £7
Sunday 18th August
Outdoor theatre: The Magic of Wonderland by Magic Light Productions
Experience a magical family adventure this summer with a spellbinding mix of storytelling, fantastical puppets, magic and illusion. Adult £10.00 Child £7.00 Child under 2 £3.00