Tyntesfield is a Gothic Revival style house near Wraxall in North Somerset that is easily accessible from Bristol.

The estate is named after the Tynte baronets, who have had a presence in the local area for the past 500 years. Although there has been a hunting lodge here since the 16th century, the main house was only built in the 1830s. Although the house was built in the Georgian period, its interior decor and overall style is more consistent with the style of the Victorian period.

A report commissioned by the National Trust in the 1970s, which catalogued Victorian country houses across the United Kingdom, said: “There is no other Victorian country house which so richly represents its age as Tyntesfield”.

Tyntesfield has been described as the country house that most richly represents the Victorian period. (Photo: Bs0u10e01 [CC BY-SA 4.0])
Tyntesfield has been described as the country house that most richly represents the Victorian period. (Photo: Bs0u10e01 [CC BY-SA 4.0])
It is one of the more recent new additions to the National Trust, who acquired the building in 2002 beating competing bidders who are said to have included Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber, Madonna and Kylie Minogue.

The house appeared in the 2017 film Crooked House as well as the television series Sherlock and Dr Who.

What to see at Tyntesfield

After purchasing the property in 2002, the National Trust set about restoring the house and surrounding gardens and it opened to the public around 18 months later, after the most urgent repairs had been completed. Although the bulk of the restoration project has been completed, Tyntesfield remains a work in progress and parts of the house continue to be renovated.

The main rooms inside the house include the billiard room, dining room, drawing room and library and there is a large hallway and staircase in the centre of the house.

The staircase gallery at Tyntesfield. (Photo: Rodw [CC BY-SA 3.0])
The staircase gallery at Tyntesfield. (Photo: Rodw [CC BY-SA 3.0])
Modelled on Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, the adjoining chapel was built between 1872 and 1877 and during Victorian times it played a central role in daily life on the estate.

Dating from the 1880s, the Home Farm buildings were originally built as farm buildings (used as a barn and piggery) and have been converted into the Home Farm Visitor Centre, which contains the estate’s main ticket office, a restaurant, an area where country crafts are demonstrated and a small garden centre.

There is also a cafe inside the Grade II*-listed Orangery, which is a rare example of a Classical-style orangery from the Victorian period.

The estate is also home to a building that was used as a sawmill during Victorian times. It is now used partly as a function venue, as an educational centre and part of the building is used as a roost for bats. Ten of the 17 species of bats living in the UK are found on the estate with eight different species living inside the big house.

The house, chapel and farm buildings are set among 61ha (150 acres) of parkland, which includes woodland, a rose garden and landscaped gardens.

Tyntesfield is a large country house in North Somerset that is easy to visit from Bristol. (Photo: Chilli Head [CC BY-SA 2.0])
Tyntesfield is a large country house in North Somerset that is easy to visit from Bristol. (Photo: Chilli Head [CC BY-SA 2.0])

Visiting Tyntesfield

Tyntesfield is located in the countryside not far from Wraxall and it is less than a 15-minute drive, or a 35-minute bus ride, from Bristol city centre.

Bus route 88 (which runs between Nailsea and Clevedon) stops on Clevedon Road near the main entrance to the property.

Routes X7 and X9 provide a more frequent service and have the benefit of running all the way from central Bristol. However, these buses stop at the southern edge of the estate and it can be difficult to find your way to the main entrance from here.

Like many big country houses, it is easiest to visit if you’re driving. There is plenty of parking available but there is a parking fee (£3 Jan–Mar; £5 Apr–Oct; £3 Nov–Dec), although parking is free for National Trust members. However, if you’re travelling by bicycle or public transport, you can get a voucher from the ticket office that gives you a 20% discount at the cafe and shop.

The house is open daily between April and October and on weekends outside this period.

Although the visitor centre, restaurant and shop are wheelchair accessible, the historic nature of the other buildings on the estate means that not everywhere is easily accessible by wheelchair users and there are some relatively steep gravel paths on the property that can be difficult for wheelchairs.

There are two cafes on site as well as a large retail area that includes a book shop, a small garden centre and a gift shop.

There are several play areas available, which makes it ideal for families with young children.

Entry to the house is via a timed-ticket system with one-hour entry blocks. There is quite a bit to see here and it is easy to a few hours exploring the estate.

Amenities
  • Parking (paid)
  • Cafe/restaurant
  • Gift shop

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