I recently took a self-tour of the fabulous Fenton House and Garden, Hampstead, London NW3. The splendid 17th-century Merchants House showcases Georgian furniture, period paintings, decorative arts, ceramics, figurines, needlepoint works and early keyboard instruments. Coupled with the picturesque Garden, this National Trust gem is a must-visit if you’re exploring the area. If you’re looking for National Trust London Houses, the best things to do in Hampstead or London Gardens, I can guarantee you’ll fall in love with Fenton House and Garden.
Fenton House and Garden Tour
The House was built by William Eades around 1886. It’s named after the Lancashire-born Riga Merchant Phillip Ibbetson Fenton. He bought the House in 1793 and undertook an extensive remodelling project. The last owner, Lady Katherine Binning, purchased the House in 1936. She bequeathed the House to the National Trust in 1952.
If you venture up Windmill Hill, you can view the large, detached property and the Front Garden through the imposing iron gates. The tour entrance is on Hampstead Grove, where you can access the Back Garden.
Tickets grant you access on the hour, and you can also join a short talk before you enter the House. I chose not to do this because I wanted to take pictures before the crowds descended.
As you wander around the grand rooms on the ground floor and first floor, you’ll see Lady Binning’s art collection and some from Peter Barkworth (Hampstead actor). These include works by the Camden Town Group, Walter Stickert, Duncan Grant, John Constable, and Albrecht Durer.
The ceramics collection boasts Chinese porcelain from the Kangxi period, 18th-century Meissen figures and Staffordshire pieces. Take your time to admire and appreciate the ceramics arranged on cabinet surfaces and displayed inside glass cabinets.
Look out for the 17th-century needlework featuring biblical and pastoral scenes that were fashionable during the Stuart period, along with botanicals.
Early keyboard instruments are placed throughout the House, including harpsicords, clavichords and virginals from the Major Benton Fletcher collection. If you’re lucky, someone will be playing one of the keyboards. You’ll find most of the instruments on the top floor of the House.
Either view the Garden before or after you visit the House. I arrived early, so I had half an hour to wander around and take pictures. You’ll feel relaxed in this tranquil Garden with colourful flowers, dark green yew hedges and benches to sit down on.
Enter via the yew arbour, and the formal Garden unfolds with an immaculate lawn and neatly clipped topiary.
There’s an enchanting painted lead statue of a shepherd by John Cheere (1735) on the lawn.
As you venture towards the back, you’ll get a great view of the sunken rose garden.
You’ll also discover the kitchen garden and historic orchard with heritage apple and pear trees.
Watch My Fenton House And Garden Video
Helpful Information About Visiting Fenton House And Garden
To learn more, visit the Fenton House and Garden website and the Fenton House Wikipedia page. The address is Hampstead Grove, London NW3 6RT, approximately five minutes from Hampstead Station and twenty minutes from Hampstead Heath Station. Current opening times listed on the website are Fridays, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays from March until October. The House and Garden are both open from 11 am until 4 pm. Tickets must be pre-booked; adults pay £7, Children £3.50, families £17.50 and one adult family is £10.50 for the Garden. Tickets for the House and Garden are £11 for adults, £5.50 for children, £27.50 for families, and one adult family pay £16.50.
While you are in the area, you may find these posts helpful:
Things To Do In Hampstead:
Hampstead London NW3 Area Guide
Ten Things To Do In Hampstead London NW3
Golders Hill Park Hampstead London NW3
Historic Houses In Hampstead:
Historic Houses Hampstead London NW3
Kenwood House Hampstead London NW3
Burgh House Hampstead London NW3
Lunch At Buttery Café Burgh House Hampstead London NW3
Keats House Hampstead London NW3
Freud Museum Hampstead London NW3
Places To Eat In Hampstead:
Buttery Cafe Burgh House Hampstead London NW3
Oak And Poppy Hampstead London NW3
Ginger And White Hampstead London NW3
Heath Street Bakehouse Hampstead London NW3
Author: Homegirl London. Photographs: Homegirl London.