Anglesey Abbey, Gardens & Lode Mill
A former 13th-century Augustinian priory, this magnificent house was bought by Lord Fairhaven in 1926. He transformed it into a place where he could entertain friends after a day’s partridge shooting or racing, adding a large library to show off his enormous collection of books and filling the house with clocks, silverware and works of art including paintings of Windsor Castle, which was a particular interest of his. HRH The Queen Mother stayed at Anglesey Abbey, and you can visit her bedroom as well as Lord Fairhaven's bed and bathroom. A look in the lord’s wardrobe reveals he was a snappy dresser with a natty tweed suit for every occasion. The House sites in 114 acres of gardens, which were designed by Lord Fairhaven, and rightly described as one of the great garden designs of the 20th century. It also houses one of the finest collections of garden statuary in the country. There’s a restaurant, gift shop, plant and bookshop, and it’s also possible to visit lovely old Lode Mill and buy freshly ground flour direct from the chute.Clarke
Facilities – at a glance
- Parking onsite
- Lower rooms accessible in house, lower floor only in Mill, good paths through most of garden
- Facilities: Electric buggy, wheelchairs for loan, large print guides
- Accessible toilets
- Open all year
- Opening Times: Open all year, daily. Check website for times
Also in the area
About the area
To the west of East Anglia is Cambridgeshire, a county best known as the home to the university that makes up the second half of ‘Oxbridge’ (the other half is Oxford). As well as its globally renowned educational credentials, it also has a rich natural history; much of its area is made up of reclaimed or untouched fens. These are low-lying areas which are marshy and prone to flooding. The lowest point in the UK is at Holme Fen, which is some 9 feet (2.75 metres) below sea level. Some of the fens had been drained before, but it was in the 19th and 20th centuries that wide-spread, successful drainage took place, expanding the amount of arable and inhabitable land available.
Ely Cathedral was built on an island among the swampy fens, but now sits among acres of productive farmland, albeit farmland criss-crossed by miles of flood-preventing watercourses. Oliver Cromwell was born in Ely, and his family home can still be visited. Cambridge itself is a beautiful and historic city, with any number of impressive old buildings, churches and colleges, and plenty of chances to mess about on the River Cam which gave the city its name.
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