Audley End House
Saffron Walden, Essex
An atmospheric portrait of daily life in Victorian times.
Known as 'the Palace of Audley End', Audley End was a Jacobean prodigy house built by Henry VIII’s Lord Chancellor and by the early 1600s was one of the largest mansions in England.
An eventual decline and debt meant that the by the 1880s it was a third of its original size, but even still, was a house of uncommon grandeur and historical importance.
More recently, the house has been lovingly and painstakingly restored to how it was in the 1880s with a recently refurbished Victorian Service Wing providing a unique insight into the 'below stairs' working of a household during the late 19th Century.
Refurnished and equipped with original and reproduction Victorian fixtures and fittings there is even examples of foods eaten in the period. This creates an atmospheric portrait of daily life for the individuals - from butler and cook down to dairy maids and lowly houseboy.
In addition the doors of the restored historic stables have recently opened, complete with resident horses and a Victorian groom. You can even dress up clothes in the stables and meet the resident horses, Captain, Smoke, Bonny and Duke.
Add the beautiful grounds, the working Organic Kitchen Garden and Audley End offers a fascinating delve into the past and a great day out in the here and now.