► Morning Adventure: Ham House and Garden


Use your morning to soak up some of the borough’s rich heritage with a visit to Ham House and Garden, a rare 17th Century House, situated on the banks of the River Thames. Whilst many historic houses close their doors during the winter months, Ham house offers visitors a number of family-friendly winter activities such as ‘A Handmade Christmas’ creative workshops and ‘Christmas Ghost Tours’. The gardens and rooms below the stairs remain open all year round, apart from Christmas Day and Boxing Day. There is free parking 400 yards from the house, you can catch the 65 or 371 bus or, weather permitting, enjoy the 1 ½ mile riverside walk from Richmond Station.

The colder months offer the perfect opportunity to admire the drama of the changing seasons against the back drop of Ham House’s stunning the architecture, beautiful grounds and working kitchen garden that still grows typical 17th Century ‘fruits, roots herbs and salads’. Escape the cold by exploring below the stairs. Open all-year-round these rooms offer visitors a hands-on experience of life as a servant during the 17th Century. You can immerse yourself in the sights and smells of history by talking to a volunteer guide, handling historic objects, exploring seasonal produce and medicinal herbs, and even tasting historic beer in the cellar.

Make sure you allow time to relax in the stylish café and browse the treasure-filled gift-shop. Serving light lunches and cream teas, in the café you can sample the fresh seasonal produce that is home-grown in the kitchen gardens.


► Afternoon Re-charge: Richmond Town Centre, Pub Meal


On cold days, Richmond Town Centre offers the perfect retreat. Spend the afternoon exploring the wide variety of high street and designer shops, relaxing in its bars and cafes or discovering one of its many restaurants. When the weather turns, there is nothing better than passing a few hours and enjoying a meal in the warmth of a friendly pub, a few fantastic examples include: The White
Swan
, The Cricketers or Jackson & Rye.

To warm up and relax after your visit to Ham House, why not try The White Horse in Richmond? Praised for its Sunday Roastsand family- friendly atmosphere (check out the play area next door), the pub is
situated just a few minute’s walk from Richmond station. The White Horse sells itself as a pub for foodies, using seasonal produce it offers a combination of high food standards and relaxed atmosphere (make sure you nab yourself some comfy seating).


► Mesmerizing Cultural Evening:                      Orange Tree Theatre 


Easily accessed by rail, underground, overground and local bus services, the Orange Tree Theatre is situated less than two minute’s walk from Richmond Station. The Theater’s close proximately to transport as well as a wealth of bars and restaurants makes it a perfect option for an evening of entertainment on those cold winter nights. The theatre started life in the upstairs rooms over the Orange Tree Pub which stands opposite the current site. Today, the Orange Tree Theatre is London’s only full time professional theatre in the round, offering visitors a special cultural experience.

The Theatre seats 172 guests in a small and intimate setting and makes the most of its interesting staging by taking an experimental approach to its performances. The intimacy of the space allows the audience to fully engage with the performance and feel as though they are apart of the action. If you are under the age of 30, plan your visit for a Tuesday or Thursday evening when the Theatre offers you the opportunity to purchase a ticket for just £10!


Related

Orange Tree Theatre
Theatre
Front shot of Orange Tree Theatre

London's only permanent theatre in the round with a special atmosphere in small and intimate venue. Online booking available.

Ham House and Garden
Historic House
Ham House and Garden

One of London’s best kept secrets, this atmospheric Stuart mansion nestles on the banks of leafy Richmond-upon-Thames. It has remained virtually unchanged for 400 years and is internationally recognised for its superb collection of textiles, furniture and art which have remained in the house for centuries. Largely the vision of Elizabeth Murray, Countess of Dysart, who was deeply embroiled in the politics of the English Civil War and subsequent restoration of the monarchy, Ham House and Garden is an unusually complete survival of the 17th century. It is reputed to be one of the most haunted houses in Britain.

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