Explore the former home of John Ruskin, which boasts stunning views across Coniston Water.
A historic Grade II listed house, Brantwood House sits within a large estate of 250 acres overlooking Coniston Water and is the former home of writer, artist and social reformer John Ruskin. It provides an insight into the world of Ruskin and his 28 years spent living in the Lakes. The house is filled with beautiful furniture, fine paints and personal possessions.
Visitors are free to explore Brantwood House. The drawing room includes Ruskin's bookcase, shell-cabinet and secretaire; this leads to the study which is home to a painting by Samuel Prout. The dining room was built in 1878 and boasts stunning view over to the mountains as well as a portrait of Ruskin aged 3 by James Northcote. In the turret upstairs, visitors will also find Ruskin's bedroom.
The remarkable gardens are set within a backdrop of Coniston Water and the Lakeland mountains beyond, with a wealth of exotic plants, flowers and ancient woodland. Ruskin used the gardens in various cultivation and drainage experiments.
During the high season there are guided walks through the gardens of which there are eight different garden areas split across three sections - the northern and southern gardens with hilly terrain and steep pathways, and the lower gardens that are much flatter. Following his death the gardens became overgrown until they were discovered and restored during the 1980s.
Within the ground of Brantwood House there are four more listed buildings – the lodge, former stable, an outbuilding and ice house. Various exhibitions, courses, special events and concerts take place at the Brantwood House Estate, as well as being known for its education work in the wider community.