Woolbeding House and estate sits in a beautiful valley not far from Midhurst in West Sussex. The National Trust has owned the 26 acres of estate since 1958, but only in the last year or so has the gardens been open to the public, as they were previously looked after by Trust tenants since 1972.
The gardens are open to the public on Thursdays and Fridays, but pre booking is a must, either by telephoning 01730 811960, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. There is no parking facility on site, but in 'open season,' a free mini bus is available from nearby Midhurst.
Woolbeding really is worth a visit with it's well laid formal gardens, maintained lawns and variety of trees. Near the house, a large 'champagne glass structure', with water rising from the middle, stands adjacent to the West Borders and certainly catches the eye. The Fountain Garden has a 16th century reproduction Italian sculpture of a young man standing on dolphins.
After admiring the formal gardens you can take a gentle stroll along the open pasture, close to the river Rother which takes you through a ruined abbey, a folly, and on to to a long, yellow Chinese Bridge spanning a lake surrounded with rocks. Among the ferns, rises a sculpture of the river god in an oyster shell gown, looking out from his grotto. A little further on you arrive at a fountain (the Spugna), made from tufa limestone. You begin to wonder what other surprises await you!
Before leaving, don't forget the vegetable gardens with its fruit trees and variety of flowers. The gardeners are always happy to chat to you if you have any questions.
A beautiful day out in a picturesque setting.