What do the Antiques Roadshow team look for when choosing their locations? “The venues we go to are rather like the stage on which a great play is set,” explains executive producer Simon Shaw. “It’s a blast of Britishness… the magnificence of the setting is very important.”
Stately homes, castles and heritage properties will fill our screens during the next series, and most of them are open to paying visitors all summer. Entry is entirely free if you choose to visit the grounds of the properties on a Roadshow date, although some buildings will be closed. No pre-registration is required, but expect to queue (visit bbc.co.uk/antiquesroadshow for more information). “We love going to places that are distinctive,” says Shaw, who’s selected some suitably grand properties this year. Filming began in April, but the following are still to come.
Bolsover Castle, Derbyshire
Rebuilt by Sir Charles Cavendish in 1612 as an aristocratic retreat, this fairytale castle near Chesterfield offers spectacular views over the Vale of Scarsdale. Inside, visitors will find ornate fireplaces, wall paintings and lavish rooms. Near the outer walls is the Riding House, with its impressive grand stone portico and strong Italian design influences. Its inhabitants once learnt the art of manège (similar to dressage, in which horses and riders complete circling, leaping and kneeling manoeuvres). Antiques Roadshow visit: Thursday 9th July
Built as a coastal citadel in Deal by Henry VIII, the imposing Tudor fortress has welcomed the likes of the Duke of Wellington, Winston Churchill and the Queen Mother. Visitors can wander the grounds, taking in the Broadwalk, the Queen Mother’s Garden and the kitchen garden. The cannons lined up in the direction of the continent give a clue to one of its most famous long-term residents: Wellington spent 23 years at the castle and it’s possible to peek into his bedroom and see the chair in which he died. Special displays this summer mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo. Antiques Roadshow visit: Sunday 19th July
Balmoral Castle, Aberdeenshire
You may recognise the Queen’s Scottish holiday home near Ballater from films including The Queen and Mrs Brown. As it’s still very much used by the royal family, visitors are only allowed access to the grounds and the ballroom, with its royal silver and collection of Edwin Henry Landseer paintings. The entrance fee will get you an audio guide to follow around the cultivated gardens. Antiques Roadshow visit: Thursday 30th July
Lyme Park, Cheshire
TV fans will recognise this grand stately home on the edge of the Peak District from the BBC’s 1995 adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. The exterior of the hall was used as Pemberley, the seat of Mr Darcy. It also appeared in the second series of The Village, doubling for the Allingham family home. The building started as a hunting lodge, before numerous alterations after 1400 transformed it into a comfortable family home. Today, antiques from dog collars to period furniture remain throughout the property. Antiques Roadshow visit: Thursday 10th September
Recorded in the Domesday Book in 1086, the Trentham Estate was once an Augustinian priory. Today it’s better known for its extraordinary 300-acre parkland, designed by Capability Brown from 1759 to 1780. As well as stunning Italian-style gardens and adjacent woodlands, there are garden and craft centres to explore, plus a viewing platform for a bird’s eye view of the grounds. Antiques Roadshow visit: Thursday 3rd September
Hanbury Hall, Worcestershire
Built in 1701 by local MP Thomas Vernon, Hanbury Hall, in Droitwich Spa, has featured on ITV’s Inspector Morse. Visitors can see the re-created Gothic corridor and redecorated smoking room, and, in the main hall and staircase, recently restored wall paintings by Sir James Thornhill. Outside, picnic opportunities are plentiful, with 20 acres of gardens and more than 400 acres of parkland, including a fruit garden, orangery, orchard and bowling green. Antiques Roadshow visit: Sunday 20th September
To order the book Antiques Roadshow: World War One in 100 Family Treasures by Paul Atterbury for £8 (usually £25) plus £1.50 p&p, call 0344 245 8092, quoting ref RTRS27, or click here.