8 reasons we love Tyntesfield
- Credit: ©NTPL/Andrew Butler
It would be easier to tell you what’s not to love about Tyntesfield House in Wraxall. Easiest of all would be just to tell you to go and see this magnificent Victorian gothic mansion for yourself for it’s only 20 minutes’ drive from Bristol. But just in case you need further persuading, here are 8 reasons we’re always delighted to visit Tyntesfield.
1 It’s so dramatic
We like the simplicity of many North Somerset historic homes, but we love Tyntesfield’s high drama. It even has gargoyles. When the National Trust started work here, their restorers found a box filled with tiny, specially made tools designed only to care for this house of endless eccentricity.
2 It’s a work in progress
No matter how often we visit Tyntesfield, it’s always different. The National Trust acquired the house in 2002 and haven’t stopped uncovering its secrets ever since. So every time you go take lots of photos and next time, compare and contrast – we promise you’ll be surprised.
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3 It’s the only part of Paris in North Somerset
If the great chapel at Tyntesfield looks familiar it’s because it’s an almost exact replica of one of Paris’s best known churches, Saint-Chapelle. Next time you’re in Paris have a look at the city’s only part of North Somerset.
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4 It’s unbelievably grand
Even catching some sun on the veranda at Tyntesfield is an event. Wander indoors you can browse the National Trust’s largest Victorian book collection in the library. There are carved picture balconies in the bedrooms. The ceilings in the public rooms are lavishly ornate. And the restored bell-board gives you a hint as to the sheer scale of the house in its heyday.
5 It feels like family
Tyntesfield might be enormous, but it was a family home for four generations and the restoration has held on to that unique atmosphere. So don’t be surprised to see a stuffed, old coconut head sitting on a shelf in the Drawing Room. It might not be as ‘important’ as the collection of magnificent stained glass, but it’s all part of the same Tyntesfield story.
6 The gardens are gorgeous
Just as much of an ongoing project as the house, Tyntesfield’s gardens are slowly, but surely growing into some of England’s loveliest. Special mention has to go to the stunning orangery, the restored kitchen garden and whoever takes care of the fabulous topiary.
7 It’s a great place for lunch
The fortune that built Tyntesfield was made in fertiliser, so you’ve got to think the eminently practical original owner would have approved of the National Trust converting the estate’s Home Farm into an excellent restaurant, shop and plant shop.
8 It’s North Somerset born and bred
Tyntesfield House isn’t just a local legend, it’s also staffed by dozens of local workers and volunteers. Even its best known painting, Zambrano’s St. Lawrence, was restored by local conservators Bush & Berry – their Flax Boulton Studio is in a converted chapel built by the original owner of Tyntesfield, William Gibb.
Tyntesfield House, Wraxall, Bristol, North Somerset, BS48 1NX