Barnsdale Gardens

Barnsdale GardensA beautiful and lasting memorial to Geoff Hamilton, a greatly loved presenter of BBC Gardeners' World. The grounds, which lie a short distance from the northern bank of Rutland water, contain Britain's largest collection of individually designed gardens, created by Geoff during the Gardeners' World series in the 1980s.

The site also contains a garden centre and tea room, which is open all year.

Gardens opening times: open daily 9-5 (9-7 summer) - Admission Charge
Location: Barnsdale Gardens, The Avenue, Exton, Oakham, Rutland LE15 8AH - Tel: 01572 813200

Lyddington Bede House

Lyddington Bede HouseThis once eminent medieval palace, home to the Bishops of Lincoln, became an alms house for the poor in 1600. Today it is run by English Heritage and open to the public. On the ground floor you can visit the tiny alms rooms, the origins of studio style living, each with its small leaded window and tiny hearth. On the above floor you will find the former bishops' Great Chamber, with exposed oak beams and an exquisitely carved ceiling cornice. The house is set in a small walled garden, located next to the parish church, in the picturesque village of Lyddington.

Opening times: Apr-Oct, Thur-Mon 10-5, Admission Charge
Location: Blue Coat Lane, Lyddington, Leicester, LE15 9LZ - Tel: +44 (0) 870 333 1181

Normanton Church Museum

Normanton ChurchOne of Rutland Water's best known landmarks, standing partially submerged and serene on the eastern edge of the reservoir. A solitary monument to the abandoned village of Normanton; now lost forever under the waters. The floor level of the church has been raised and the lower part of the building protected with a pier of stones. The accessible parts of the church contain a small museum that explains the construction of the reservoir. Other exhibits include an Anglo-Saxon skeleton and locally found fossils.

Opening times: Mar to mid Dec 10-4 weekdays, 5pm weekends - Admission Charge
Location: Normanton, Rutland Water (access via Normanton car park, south shore) Tel: 01572 653026

Rutland Water (Empingham Reservoir)

Rutland WaterA 110 ft high, half-mile wide dam was built across the River Gwash to create this vast reservoir in the 1970s. The reservoir, with a surface area of around 5000 acres, not only supplies water, but is also a haven for wildlife and a popular venue for water sports, such as fishing and sailing. A 25 mile footpath/cycle track runs around its shores, with car parking and picnic areas provided all around. During the summer months a ferry boat (Rutland Belle) provides cruises around the reservoir from the Harbour at Whitwell, and also to the Normanton Church Museum.

Wing Turf Maze

One of only eight known to exist in England, the 40 ft (14 m) diameter turf maze, is believed to date from medieval times. Traditionally said to have been used by penitents (usually blindfolded) who would crawl around it on their knees reciting prayers, hoping gain spiritual benefit or atonement.

Location: Glaston Rd, Wing, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 8RU

Rutland Railway Museum

Rutland Railway Museum.jpgA working open-air museum for heritage steam and diesel tank engines, located in a disused ironstone quarry. On special event days you can see the engines running on the short section of track, pulling and operating the old quarry machinery.

Opening times: Tue/Thur/Sun - Admission Free
Charge for special events

Location: off the B668, between Cottesmore and Ashwell.

Butterfly Farm and Aquatic Centre

Swallowtail ButterfyThe main exhibit is an enclosed jungle area with tropical butterflies and birds. Other exhibits include an insect cave with tarantulas, scorpions and monitors lizards, plus a display of local coarse and freshwater fish, Koi carp and terrapins.

Opening times: Spring to October - Admission Charge
Location: Rutland Water, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 8PX
Tel: 01780 460515
Website: rutlandwaterbutterflyfarm.co.uk

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Towns and Villages in Rutland

Ashwell, Hambleton, Lyddington, Oakham, Uppingham





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Please note that the above information was accurate at the time this page was last updated. This information is subject to change at any time (opening times in particular), therefore if you plan on visiting any of the above attractions, please check the owner's website first or phone them for the latest details.

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