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“Highly eccentric but anjoyable visit”
Review of Samlesbury Hall

Samlesbury Hall
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Built in 1325 Samlesbury Hall is steeped in fascinating history, retaining its original typical black and white exterior, the Hall is almost equidistant between Blackburn and Preston, yet retaining a rural feel. Saved from demolition in the 1920’s by six local businessmen, it remains in the Charitable Trust today with the aim of maintaining and keeping open for the visitors to enjoy.With the turbulent history of catholic families, the haunting of Lady Dorothy Southworth (and others), a captivating insight into life from the early 14th to the early 20th Century is all waiting to be discovered.Samlesbury Hall also offers the very best of Lancashire, with exhibitions from local artists, antiques and collectibles and a gift shop, which sells high quality Lancashire produce.The extensive grounds are delightful and even include a small selection of animals in an ever increasing menagerie. The gardens also feed the kitchen and the award-winning restaurant and coffee lounge.Samlesbury Hall is open to visitors all year round and promises something for all the family
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access, Baby buggy parking
Reviewed 27 August 2014

Samlesbury Old Hall is not well signposted, but is well worth visiting. QUite a sharp turn off the main road, so you will need care if driving. The attractions round the Hall (which is the centre of this complex) are odd - these include a series of animals on view, including rabbits and a pig. Driving out, by a different route from the entrance way, you turn into a roughly surfaced area, with a seemingly abandoned retail unit (??) in one corner. At first it looks as if you have landed in a lorry car park, but perseverance gets you out back to the main road!

As a visitor attraction, the Hall is good value - much cheaper than National Trust places, for instance. We found most of the signage reasonably self-explanatory, and the historic atmosphere is retained. It is certainly worth one visit, at least.

If the Hall does not appeal as a paid visitor attraction, it is possible to see the whole exterior simply by walking round. The lawns and garden areas are well-kept. to stop for coffee or meals, you have the odd arrangement that you have to go into the main Hall, and can walk through most of the ground floor rooms to the restaurant or the "coffee lounge". I have not used the restaurant, but have coffee and sandwiches in the "coffee lounge". This is a comfortable area with sofas, with a bar off. It feels like a piece of heritage itself - something from the 1960s, perhaps? - but is a pleasant environment where one could sit all day. Coffee and snacks were reasonable, and the staff attentive. There is an endearing air of slight improvisation about the place.

From the coffee lounge, you have to walk to the far end of the building, through part of the historic house. There are two ways out, or three if you choose to go all the way round to the front entrance. Oddly, there is a more direct exit to the lawned area, but you are not allowed to go in this way, and have to walk the long way round. Another alternative is to go upstairs, crossing the room/bridge, after looking at various pieces of art, antique furniture and paintings, and then descend into the antiques shop.

I suppose all of this could be annoying if you expect a carefully laid out area, like a fast food outlet, but I have visited on several occasions and always found it a good place to stop for coffee, and fun to visit.

Thank waterspirit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"wedding venue"
in 25 reviews
"free tour"
in 8 reviews
"for sale"
in 24 reviews
"treasure hunt"
in 11 reviews
"guided tour"
in 20 reviews
"small animals"
in 8 reviews
"steeped in history"
in 12 reviews
"free entry"
in 22 reviews
"gift shop"
in 26 reviews
"shepherds huts"
in 11 reviews
"priest hole"
in 8 reviews
"children's play area"
in 10 reviews
"beautiful building"
in 12 reviews
"entrance fee"
in 16 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 18 reviews
"afternoon tea"
in 19 reviews
"historic house"
in 8 reviews
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Reviewed 26 August 2014

We've been visiting Samlesbury Hall for longer than I care to remember, this visit was after a few years of not visiting.
Lunch was the main objective, which was excellent ,a shared "Ploughman's Platter" ,really tasty. The down side to this was the waiting!!! 15 mins to take our order and the 25 mins to serve. it was quite busy but I think there was probably not enough staff. It won't put us off !! The 'very good ' rating is for the food.
It's not expensive to view the Hall but we felt a bit let down because the upstairs rooms were empty!!!
Just two small ones with small exhibitions.
There used to be lots of antiques for sale but they have all gone apart from a small shop.
It's a nice place to visit all the same and worth it for the food!!

1  Thank HOLLY18Lancashire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sharon J, General Manager at Samlesbury Hall, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2014

Hello , thank you very much for your constructive comments and the very good marks you gave us. We will certainly look at the staff level on our busy days.. We usually pride ourselves on our good service
We enjoyed the antiques as much as everyone did but they were just not bringing in enough revenue and demanding a tremendous amount of staff time. We are at the moment waiting for a very exciting new exhibition in the long gallery.. So please bear with us. A lot of red tape to go through !!
As you are aware as a registered charity the Hall is here for those who support it.. And we are always willing to listen to your views.. Thank you again.

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Reviewed 22 August 2014

I purchased a voucher from travel zoo at the reduced cost of £15 for an annual pass to samlesbury hall. On arrival we were met by very friendly staff but it quickly went downhill from then on.
There was very little to see in the hall as there was no exhibition on . A few interesting bits of information but no big wow !! We had a walk around the grounds and to the animal enclosures ... Again a big disappointment .... Not many animals to be seen and all looking pretty miserable ! One rabbit looking very much worse for wear. We did mention it to a friendly member of staff ...
Shop full of overpriced goods. Antique shop very small and cluttered.
I note a lot of reviews mention the restaurant .. Not having tried it I can't comment but not everyone wants to visit a restaurant on a day out and we overheard a few people complaining on how over priced it was ..
All in all it turned out an expensive day out to see pretty much nothing !
Maybe when an exhibition is on I may return to make use of the annual pass but if not once you have had a walk round relatively empty rooms and small gardens it's not something you would want to see again ! Wish I had just paid the £ 3 admission price for my husband and I .

1  Thank birdcage2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sharon J, General Manager at Samlesbury Hall, responded to this reviewResponded 23 August 2014

Hello
We are so very sorry you find the Hall a disappointment, your £15 membership allows you free entry at anytime for four people when we are open for a whole year. not just one day. The special event days allows you half price which for four of you is a saving of £10 on one day alone. The Long Gallery which is clear at the moment is the only room that does not have other information or an exhibition. But is often admired for its beauty . Every Sunday we have guided tours, (given by four different guides on consecutive Sundays) The restaurant wins taste Lancashire Highest quality award every year and you can be assured of the finest freshest food, served by the lovely staff you have already met. Exhibitions at the moment at the Hall are off the coffee lounge and are paintings by Sam Bahia (a much prized local artist) In the Holmes Room. Justin Nugent's photography in the Marsden Room, The Great War with artefacts and local history on the Bridge.
We re-home pets which often need care and attention and our Warden knows just which bunny looks sad at the moment. He is under special treatment and rehabilitation, so keep an eye out for him! We also have the Ascroft offering fine antiques then down to the west wing vintage and cabinet room to the shop and Ice cream parlour. The Courtyard, front lawn, herb gardens, rosarium, tennis court and woodland play area offer relaxation and a chance to sit in the sun (when its with us)
We will be exhibiting some very exciting local history in the new year, but we need to keep certain rooms open before then so that we may have lots of exciting events for families during the cooler and wetter months.
We do hope you make the most of your membership and would be very pleased if you would like to come in and talk to us about your experiences here at Samlesbury Hall
We are a registered charity and all the much needed income helps keep our beautiful building alive for all to enjoy in the future year

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Reviewed 14 August 2014

Took friends from Malta and we were thrilled as we were allowed to join a W.I. tour which had hired a freelance tour guide who not only gave you the history of Samlesbury but acted it out and also got the audience involved too! My poor husband was picked! Excellent day out and the restaurant is lovely, best scone and cream i have ever, ever had. Please give it a try - you will not be disappointed. Staff are really friendly.

Thank janelledarwen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sharon J, General Manager at Samlesbury Hall, responded to this reviewResponded 23 August 2014

Thank you so very much, we are delighted when we get such a nice review.. We look forward to seeing you soon

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Reviewed 12 August 2014

I visited Salmesbury Hall recently,and was delighted with the house, it is very unspoilt and looked as if the occupants had just stepped out. I was impressed that it had not been 'restored' and was authentic.
The lady at the pay desk was most helpful and obviously very passionate about the house and it's history. She was very knowledgable and gave me some local information which I found very interesting.

I treated myself to lunch in the fabulous restaurant, where service was excellent, staff friendly and obliging, even offering me a daily paper to read while I waited. The food was very obviously homemade and very fresh, and delicious. Couldn't fault anything.

I shall return, if only to try something else in the restaurant! There is plenty of choice.

Thank AliTup
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sharon J, General Manager at Samlesbury Hall, responded to this reviewResponded 23 August 2014

Thank you so very much for your lovely review, it is often difficult to please everyone and we always pass on your lovely comments to our lovely staff.
See you soon.

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