Welcome to Woodchester Mansion
A unique Victorian Gothic house hidden in a beautfiul Cotswold valley
Open 11am – 5pm every Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays, from Friday 29th March to Sunday 3rd November.
A house like no other…
Woodchester Mansion is a unique and amazing Grade I listed Victorian Gothic house hidden in a beautiful Cotswold valley.
It is an unfinished masterpiece. Building started about 1857, but stopped in the mid-1860s so floors and ceilings are missing, walls not plastered and windows unglazed. All the secrets of the construction of the Mansion are visible – something visitors will never see in another country house.
The Mansion was designed by a young local architect, Benjamin Bucknall from Rodborough. He produced a unique Gothic Revival house which blends the local traditional work in limestone with the ideas of the French architectural thinker Viollet-le-Duc.
If you are interested in the Mansion and its history we have a book.
The quality of the stone carvings in the Mansion is outstanding: some are inspired by the plants in the surrounding valley and others are life-like images of animals. There are also real mammals to be seen as the Mansion houses breeding colonies of Greater and Lesser Horseshoe bats.
Owned by Stroud District Council, the Mansion is managed by the Woodchester Mansion Trust (it is not a National Trust property). On Open Days visitors can see how the house was built, admire the fine carvings and look at the bats on CCTV. Refreshments are available, we have a gift shop and the surrounding Woodchester Park (National Trust) can be explored. It is also possible to arrange private tours and hire of the Mansion.
Latest News & Events
We're looking for new volunteers for our 2024 Open Days. We need minibus drivers, ticket desk and reception volunteers, and tour guides.
If you're interested please come and meet us in the cafe at Stroud Sub Rooms on Sat 24th Feb 10:30am - 12:30pm, or contact the office.
The weekend of Sat 8th & Sun 9th June there will be a Stone Festival at the Mansion. The public can join members of the Stonemasons' Guild of St Stephen at their traditional guild meeting. There will be stone carving, dry stone walling, carpentry and much more to see, talks to listen to, story telling for children - and food, drink & music. Watch this space!
Things to see and do at Woodchester Mansion
As you can see from the picture above, the Mansion (centre) is hidden deep in a beautiful Cotswold valley.
If you’re not a local, please see the How to Find Us page so you have a smooth journey.
On open days a Minibus to the Mansion runs from NT Buckholt car park only.
Guided tours at 11:45am and 2:30pm – or self-guided.
Come to the Mansion and learn the ancient craft of stone carving under the supervision of our Master Mason, and take home your own masterpiece. We hold one-day starter courses approx. monthly throughout the year. Dates already fixed for 2024 are: 24th Feb, 23rd Mar, 27th Apr, 25th May and 8th June. A great new experience – and an ideal present.
Do you belong to a local organisation? We run private tours of the Mansion for groups of at least 12 people. You’ll be collected from the car park, have your own tour guide and the Mansion to yourself. Tea, coffee and home-made cake are also available. Now’s the time to make arrangements for Spring/Summer 2024….
Our members are wonderful backers of the Woodchester Mansion Trust. If you become a member you will gain free admission to the Mansion on Open Days, access to exclusive events, a regular newsletter and a discount on shop goods. Plus the feel-good factor of supporting a worthwhile local charity. We have a current offer, join now and your membership lasts until 1st Jan 2025.
Volunteering is key to the Mansion. Back in 1987 the building was saved from dereliction thanks to the enthusiasm and voluntary effort of local people. We depend on our group of 50+ volunteers to run the Mansion on public Open Days. Many of our events have volunteers on duty. If you’re interested in joining us in 2024 please drop in to the cafe in the Sub Rooms in Stroud on Sat 24th Feb 10:30am – 13:30pm. You’ll be able to meet some of our volunteers and chat about what we do.
Lucky Severn Lottery
This local lottery provides a boost to Mansion funds. It’s especially valuable to us during the winter months when the Mansion is closed to the public. The lottery can boost your funds too, as one of our supporters found when they won a £250 prize. Please support us and subscribe – you may be lucky too!
Watch this space!
The cafe is having a revamp for 2024
More details soon
We’re supported by
We are delighted to have been awarded a grant of £22,500 from the Charles Skey Charitable Trust. The grant is for improvements to the main entrance, including a new door and a much-needed levelling of the floor. It will also provide customised shop fittings in the entrance hall. Work is now progressing; the floor has been fixed, the external ramp is part complete and the door is due to be fitted at the start of March. We hope all will be ready for the beginning of the open season on Good Friday.