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Happy Birthday, to the National Trust!

Happy Birthday, to the National Trust!

In Heritage

In 1895 nature and culture risked becoming afterthoughts in the drive for progress. United by a common belief that nature, beauty and history were for everyone, the founders; Octavia Hill, Robert Hunter and Hardwicke Rawnsely, set up the National Trust in 1895 so that natural and historic places could be protected for future generations.

The values are the same today as they were back then and throughout this year the National Trust are celebrating the here and now with a key focus on wellbeing.

The National Trust in the Harrogate District

We are extremely fortunate to have three unique National Trust properties in the Harrogate District. The first of which is the impressive Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden near Ripon. With features spanning over 900 years, there is much to explore at this beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site. Unforgettable vistas of elegant ornamental lakes, avenues and follies can be enjoyed in one of the best surviving examples of an 18th century Georgian water garden.

Incorporated into the garden design are the dramatic ruins of the 12th century Cistercian abbey. Other features include a rare monastic water mill, the elegant Fountains Hall, St Mary’s Church and the medieval deer park.

Next is the natural spectacle of Brimham Rocks. The rocks, sculpted by 320 million years of earth movement as well as thousands of years of ice, rain and wind, have taken on weird and wonderful shapes. Visitors can balance on the ‘Rocking Stones’ whilst spotting formations such as ‘the dancing bear’ and ‘the gorilla.’

These fascinating rocks tower over heather moorland, offering panoramic views across Nidderdale and the Vale of York. Brimham Rocks and its heather moorland are both Sites of Special Scientific Interest and are a magnet for those who enjoy the great outdoors; climbers, walkers and families will really love the freedom to explore this prehistoric landscape.

Last but by no means least is the magnificent Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens - a place of reinvention; evolving gardens, captivating art exhibitions and a Hall with over 300 years of stories waiting to be discovered. The Saloon Galleries in the hall display exhibitions of contemporary and historic art and new for this year is the Arts Council Collection In the moment: The Art of Wellbeing.

All year round the gardens and parkland are full of colour from snowdrops and crocuses to pumpkins and apples. The gardens are experiencing a renaissance; new planting schemes and garden rooms, designed by award-winning designer Andy Sturgeon and this year sees work commence on the new Mediterranean garden.

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