Taking the Plunge - Cellar Tours of Holkham Hall
Tuesdays 6th August, 3rd September and 1st October, 11am-12.30pm and 1.30pm-3pm
Take a walk back through time and peel away the layers of history in the cellars at Holkham Hall. Discover its Secret Heart. Visitors are treated to a wander through the warren of corridors and chambers serving the hub of the building. These areas are not normally on public view.
Begin the tour by hearing the history of the buildings to the east of the hall. Hear the story of The Lady Elizabeth wing - a former laundry and bowling alley, now a dedicated events venue. See where the army parked their lorries during World War II and hear how Holkham played its part, hosting the Royal Engineers. Hear about the slaughter house and original game larder. Once you reach the door to the cellars, you’ll discover how the hall was built (above ground from the basement up).
Find out the scale of the kitchen complex, from the furnace room below the Old Kitchen to the salting and slate rooms. And see some very early cold room technology too.
See boilers old and not so old and find out how the hall is heated today. Pass under the Marble Hall and see how the underfloor heating system worked – and still works to this day!
See the old laundry, making your way through the labyrinth of passages which link the old still room and bakery at the east end with the glorious vaulted wood store at the west end of the hall. Peek into corridors and around corners and wonder where those stairs come out! Follow the modern day ducting and pipework – if you can!
Above all, for those who wish to discover more about how Holkham Hall worked – and works – behind the scenes (and down below) – this is the perfect tour. Whether your interest is old fashioned food preparation or old fashioned heating technology, or you have always wanted to know where that staircase goes, there is something for you.
Tours last for approximately 1 1/2 hours. The route for the tour is step free, but will include some uneven surfaces and gravel surfaces.Please ensure you wear shoes suitable for walking on uneven surfaces - flat shoes are recommended. Also be aware that the cellars are still very much working areas, so we ask that you don’t touch anything and don’t wear your best clothes as there will be a bit of dust! If you have any particular access requirements please contact the ticket office to discuss on 01328 713111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We recommend that the tour is suitable for children aged 10 and over.
Tickets: £25 adult, £12.50 child. Parking charge included in ticket price.
To book telephone Holkham Ticket Office on 01328 713111 or click the button below.
If you enjoy finding out about how life was lived upstairs and downstairs, why not take a look at our other behind the scenes tour - Hidden Passages and Servants’ Stairs.
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