Lyme, on the western edge of the Peak District, is a fine example of the Palladian style, the work of the Italian architect Giacomo Leoni in the 1720s, and famously featured as ‘Pemberley’ in the 1995 BBC TV adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. Darcy, played by Colin Firth, took his famous dip in the lake in front of the house. Lyme, set in a rural idyll of gardens, parkland and moorland, yet only a stone’s throw from metropolitan Stockport, was the home of the Legh family for 600 years. The interior, a mix of Elizabethan and later rooms, houses some remarkable Mortlake tapestries, the Lyme Caxton Missal prayer-book and a nationally-important collection of clocks. If you prefer outdoor attractions to the splendours of the house, you'll enjoy the wildfowl on the lake and the deer on the moorland. The 1,300-acre park has excellent short walks and viewpoints. If you’re lucky, the walk up to the 18th century turreted former hunting tower, known as The Cage, may reward you with a view of the Peak’s largest herd of red deer running freely. Children can let off steam in the Crow Wood Playscape with its giant slide, badger den and rope walks. Photo credits: 1-Andreas von Einsiedel, 2-Emma Williams, 3-Graham Bowerbank, 4-Arnhel de Serra, 5-Robert Morris - all by permission of National Trust Images.
Facilities – at a glance
Suitable for all child ages
- Parking onsite
- Access restricted, no lift to other floors in the house, grounds have some slopes and uneven gravel paths
- Facilities: Large print guide, induction loop, wheelchairs, shuttle bus
- Accessible toilets
- Opening Times: Open 15 Feb-30 Oct, House Fri-Tue; 25 Jul-5 Sep Thu-Tue (last admission 4). Garden daily 10.30-5. Park open all year daily 8-6. Closed 25 Dec
Also in the area
About the area
Nestled between the Welsh hills and Derbyshire Peaks, the Cheshire plains make an ideal location to take things slow and mess around in boats. Cheshire has more than 200 miles (302 km) of man-made waterways, more than any other county in England. The Cheshire Ring is formed from the Rochdale, Ashton, Peak Forest, Macclesfield, Trent and Mersey and Bridgewater canals. This route takes you through a lot of Cheshire, and bits of other counties as well.
While exploring the county’s waterways, covering ground on foot or admiring the typical white plaster and black timber-frame houses, make sure to have a taste of Cheshire’s most famous produce. Although Cheddar has become Britain’s most popular cheese (accounting for over half of the cheese sales in the UK), it was once Cheshire cheese that was in every workman’s pocket back in the 18th century. Its moist, crumbly texture and slightly salty taste mean it goes well with fruit, peppers or tomatoes. As well as the usual white, there are also red and blue veined varieties.
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