Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Review

Last Updated on 20/07/2022

Wentworth Woodhouse is one of the largest and grandest stately homes in Yorkshire. But there is more to this grand building than meets the eye! Slip behind the curtain on a Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour and explore the secret spaces the public rarely get to see!

In this guide I share my review of the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour. It includes everything you need to know before you visit Wentworth Woodhouse, plus my thoughts on this guided tour that shows you the house from a new perspective.

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About Wentworth Woodhouse

Before we delve into the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour review, here’s everything you need to know about Wentworth Woodhouse.

Where is Wentworth Woodhouse?

Wentworth Woodhouse is a grand stately home near the village of Wentworth in South Yorkshire. It is five miles north of Rotherham and 10 miles from Sheffield city centre.

Wentworth Woodhouse exterior facade

Does anyone live in Wentworth Woodhouse?

No one currently lives in Wentworth Woodhouse. The Fitzwilliam family continued to live in the house until the 1980s, but they were forced to sell it due to the staggering cost of maintenance.

Who now owns Wentworth Woodhouse?

The Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust are the current owners of Wentworth Woodhouse. They bought the house in 2016 for £7 million, with an estimated restoration cost of £40 million. The aim of the Trust is to restore and preserve the house for the community to enjoy.

Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Staircase

How many rooms are there at Wentworth Woodhouse?

Wentworth Woodhouse is rumoured to have a room for every day of the year – 365 in total! However, only a small number of those are accessible to the public.

Currently guests can visit the state rooms on their visit. But tours like the Hidden Tour give visitors a sneak peek at what else hides behind the scenes at Wentworth Woodhouse.

Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Review

So now you know a bit more about Wentworth Woodhouse, let’s delve into the hidden tour review.

What is the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour?

Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour is a behind the scenes guided tour of some of the rooms that aren’t usually accessible to the public. Only a small fraction of the hundreds of rooms at Wentworth Woodhouse are currently restored to a state which makes them safe for visitors. This tour peels back the curtain on the rest of the rooms that make up this grand house.

Resident archivist David Allott leads the tour. David has a vast knowledge of the history of the house and the Wentworth family. He’ll share this knowledge on the guided tour as he gives you a glimpse into the secret spaces of the house.

Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Corridor

What do you see on the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour?

The Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour is an exploration of the upper floors of the central and right-hand wing sections of the building (if you are looking at it from the East Front).

The state rooms occupy the left-hand wing of the building, which is where the general public typically explore. However, the upper central and right-hand sections of the house have an interesting history, which is what you will explore on the Hidden Tour.

Many of the rooms visited on the tour are severely neglected. Peeling paint, discarded furniture and decaying woodwork will become familiar sights as you venture into the parts of Wentworth Woodhouse few other people get to see.

Lady Mabel College

In 1950 Wentworth Woodhouse became home to Lady Mabel College, a women’s P.E. teacher training college. A substantial portion of the house served as the training space and dormitories for female P.E. teachers in training up until the 1980s.

The Hidden Tour takes you through many of the rooms once occupied by the college and its students. Many of these still boast the colourful decor of the period. It gives you a unique insight into what it may have been like for a student lucky enough to call Wentworth Woodhouse their home!

Family Rooms

The family continued to live in Wentworth Woodhouse until 1989. With the college as a tenant, the family maintained 40 rooms as an apartment. These rooms were located to the right-hand end of the house.

Today, these rooms are also showing signs of decay and neglect after decades of being left empty. Passing through old bedrooms, bathrooms and nurseries, you get an idea of how the family might have once lived.

Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Mirror

How long is the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour?

The Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour is advertised as lasting between 70-90 minutes. However, it will vary depending on the size and engagement of your group. The group we toured with asked a lot of questions and really engaged in the conversation – so much so that the tour lasted around two hours in the end!

I really enjoyed the fact that the tour was flexible to the needs of the group. There wasn’t a script or a sense of urgency as we moved around, and we had plenty of time to explore each room at our own pace to fully make the most of the experience. Likewise, it didn’t feel unnecessarily long and drawn out.

David did an excellent job of commanding the tour at a comfortable speed for our group and the people in it. However, one thing to keep in mind would be if you have other tours or experiences booked on the same day as there is a chance this tour may overrun.

Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour

Important Information about the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour

If you are planning to experience the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour for yourself, here is some important information to note:

  • This tour involves climbing and descending many sets of stairs, so may not be appropriate for anyone with mobility issues.
  • The tour explores areas that are dark, have low ceilings and uneven floors. Sturdy footwear is essential.
  • I’d recommend eating something prior to the tour. As the tour takes place across lunchtime and can overrun, you’ll want to ensure you’re well fed and not distracted by a grumbling stomach part way through. Especially as part of the tour takes you above the kitchen where the food smells delicious!
Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Lamp

Is it worth doing the Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour?

The Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour is well worth experiencing. It is a unique opportunity to glimpse behind the glamour of the state rooms and discover parts of the house very few visitors get to see.

When you lift the curtain, it reveals a vastly different Wentworth Woodhouse to the one you expect to see. And with the ongoing restoration work taking place, these currently decaying rooms will eventually be restored to their former glory. But, for the time being, you can make the most of this unique transitional period of Wentworth Woodhouse history.

Wentworth Woodhouse Behind the Scenes Hidden Tour

How to book your Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour

If you’re ready to experience the secret side of Wentworth Woodhouse, book your Hidden Tour here. The tour runs at 11am most Saturdays but does book up quickly! Pre-booking your place on the tour is essential.

Other things to see at Wentworth Woodhouse

When you book a Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour, your ticket includes entry to the rest of the estate too. Here are the other things to see at Wentworth Woodhouse on your visit.

State Rooms

The State Rooms are currently the only rooms at Wentworth Woodhouse that are open to the general public. These principal rooms show just how grand Wentworth Woodhouse is! Your journey through these rooms will include the stunning Marble Saloon, extravagant dining rooms and spectacular galleries.

Your Hidden Tour ticket grants you entry to the state rooms when they open at 1pm. You’ll want to take advantage of this…trust me!

Gardens

Wentworth Woodhouse has an enviable 87 acres of beautiful gardens. You can make the most of this on your visit by strolling through the wildflower meadows, beneath the ancient trees and along the impressive South Terrace.

Your Hidden Tour ticket includes entry to the gardens from 10am.

Things to know about visiting Wentworth Woodhouse

If you’re itching to plan your visit to Wentworth Woodhouse and experience the hidden tour for yourself, here’s all the information you need to know before you go.

Wentworth Woodhouse Opening Times

Wentworth Woodhouse is open Tuesday to Sunday between 10am and 5pm. Last admission is at 4:15pm.

The gardens can be accessed from 10am, but the state rooms don’t open until 1pm.

Wentworth Woodhouse Ticket Prices

Admission to the house and gardens costs £11/adult (17 years+.) Children aged 16 years and under can enter for free.

Alternatively, you can choose simply to explore the gardens on your visit. A garden only ticket costs £7/adult and children aged 16 and under can enter for free.

National Trust members get discounted entry on all Wentworth Woodhouse tickets including tours. Read my National Trust membership review here to see if a National Trust membership is a worthwhile investment for you.

Please note that Wentworth Woodhouse only accept card payments throughout the site.

How to get to Wentworth Woodhouse

Here are the easiest ways to access Wentworth Woodhouse:

By car: Wentworth Woodhouse is a short drive from Junction 35 of the M1. The proximity to the motorway makes it extremely easy to access Wentworth Woodhouse by car. There is also a large, free car park on the site. Navigate to S62 7TQ.

By public transport: There are regular train services to Wentworth village from Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster. From Wentworth train station you can catch the 136 bus service towards Wentworth Woodhouse. It is then a short walk to reach the house.

Before you go

So, if you’re planning a trip to Wentworth Woodhouse, make sure you don’t miss the opportunity to sneak behind the scenes on a Hidden Tour. And if you want to discover other unique ways to explore this beautiful house, check out what’s on at Wentworth Woodhouse for more one-of-a-kind experiences.

And if you love Yorkshire as much as I do, sign up for my weekly newsletter for even more Yorkshire adventures and tips!

Until our next adventure,

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14 thoughts on “Wentworth Woodhouse Hidden Tour Review”

  1. I love how detailed your posts are! I feel like I have been there already, yet I’m still curious to visit! Thank you for sharing ❤️

    Reply
    • Aah thanks so much 💙 I’m glad you found the guide helpful! Wentworth Woodhouse is an impressive building that is well worth exploring! I hope you get an opportunity to see it in person! Thanks for reading x

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  2. I hope to visit the UK sometime in the future. We don’t have historic places of such age and grandeur in New Zealand. I admire it from afar. Good luck to The Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust in their restorations

    Reply
    • I hope you get the opportunity to visit the UK soon! Wentworth Woodhouse is such a beautiful place to visit. I look forward to seeing the restoration work progress and the building evolve over the next few years!

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    • The hidden tour was so much fun! I recommend visiting Wentworth Woodhouse if you get the chance, it is a stunning building!

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  3. I absolutely love hidden tours! I haven’t been to the Wentworth Woodhouse when in the UK. Looks like I really missed out. For history lovers like myself, you probably could spend all day here, despite the tour being 70-90 minutes. Thanks for sharing this lovely place!

    Reply
    • Wentworth Woodhouse is certainly a bit of a hidden gem. Given how huge it is, you would think it would be better known! It is well worth a visit when you are next in the area! I definitely recommend a full day trip. Once you’ve taken the tour, grabbed some lunch, explored the State Rooms and the gardens the day will fly by!

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  4. Love your post, it has so many details and tips. I didn’t know much about Wentworth Woodhouse, but your guide let me learn a lot about it! The tour looks vert interesting, and the guide sounds very knowledgeable!! Thanks for the post 🙂

    Reply
    • I’m glad you like the guide and found it thorough! I wanted to cover off as many questions as I possibly could! The Hidden Tour guide was wonderful and knew everything imaginable about Wentworth Woodhouse! It is a fascinating place that is well worth exploring. Thanks for reading!

      Reply
  5. I can’t get over the beautiful details in this house! The wallpaper alone is so intricate, and then the garden looks delightful too. I’d love touring the Wentworth Woodhouse…hopefully soon!

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  6. This looks so cool! It reminds me of a cooler, bigger version of the house in Rose Red. We’re traveling to the UK next summer so I’ve bookmarked this so I can plan a visit!

    Reply

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