Beforehand we checked out the web site and were immediately aware that access for a wheelchair was going to be difficult - well done for the honesty, the decision was then straight forward that that this was not a trip for my elderly mother.On arrival in the car park as soon as my slightly limited mobility was mentioned we were cheerfully directed straight up to the Hall we no quibbles. Thank you.
We met my sister and her young family on the area outside the tea rooms where there are plenty of benches and we had a picnic before entering the hall. Having your own picnic there, despite them having their own tea rooms/restaurant, is in no way discouraged in fact blankets are available for loan from the ticket kiosk for such use, I can honestly say I have never experienced that before and to me it implied a great attitude and a certain generosity of spirit. We did have tea later in the tea room, after going around the hall but before a full exploration of the gardens and were able to spend time and muse over our visit without being moved on, thank you.
Haddon Hall is unspoiled, well kept both in terms of conservation levels and housekeeping - e.g. carefully arranged flowers that artistically catch the light and enhance rather than detract and overall just exquisite. The free flow is spot on, no-one wants to be herded through and the guides who were there seemed knowledgeable and helpfully pointed out things we might not otherwise have noticed. We went on the summer time late night Thursday opening and that was definitely well worthwhile as it gave us all the time we needed to fully explore without feeling rushed.
This was my first visit but I shall certainly visit again. Whilst sadly unsuitable for wheelchair users simply because of its age it is certainly very family and people friendly. A must!
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