Osterley Park is a Georgian country estate in west London, now owned by the National Trust. Described by Horace Walpole as ‘the palace of palaces’, Osterley was created in the late 18th century by architect and designer Robert Adam for the Child family to entertain and impress their friends and clients.
Today the house is presented as it would have looked in the 1780s: ‘Enter the house as the family’s guests would have via the impressive stone steps leading up to the portico. Stroll through the colourful formal gardens, transformed during our six year-long project from an overgrown wilderness back to their 18th century grandeur of herbaceous borders, roses and ornamental vegetables beds. Look out for the original Robert Adam summer house full of lemon trees and highly scented shrubs.’
The house has a nice café in what used to be the stables tea-room, with hot and cold food on offer. The grounds are wonderful to walk around and play in: there are woods, a lake, a forgotten boathouse and an ancient meadow to explore, bursting with wildflowers and butterflies.
The parkland is open every day, 7.00am-7.30pm, except Christmas Day. For house opening times and details of guided tours, see the Osterley Park website.