” A typical Christmas scene at a National Trust property with a tree, presents, log fire and a table laden with fruit, nuts, Christmas pudding, wine glasses and decanter” ©National Trust Images/Andreas von Einsiedel
The National Trust works to preserve and protect the coastline, countryside and buildings of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Incorporated in 1894, The National Trust is one of the largest landowners in the United Kingdom. It owns and operates heritage properties, including historic houses and gardens, industrial monuments and social history sites, most of which are open to the public free of charge.
” The Christmas garland in the Hall at Cotehele. The hall is decorated in December for events held in the Hall. Created with dried flowers. ©National Trust Images/Mark Bolton
During the holiday season, the Trust opens many of its most important homes and landscapes for special events including visits from Santa, decorating and cooking workshops, Dickens readings and concerts.
“View through a doorway atGreys Court, Oxfordshire” ©National Trust Images/Nadia Mackenzie
The halls and drawing rooms and kitchens of the dozens of 16th, 17th and 18th century manors and Victorian and Edwardian country estates owned by the Trust are decked out with Christmas cheer. They are resplendent with traditional Christmas trees, garlands, presents, toys and other decorations.
“Longcase clock with a Christmas tree in the foreground at Greys Court, Oxfordshire.” ©National Trust Images/Nadia Mackenzie
Each site is uniquely decorated to reflect the traditions of the region, as well as the historical traditions of the house, manor or cottage.
Close up of freshly baked mince pies. Christmas at Petworth House, West Sussex ©National Trust Images/Nadia Mackenzie
A visit to many of the National Trust sites at Christmas is complete with the smells of the season wafting from kitchens.
Toy soldier Christmas decorations on a chest of drawers in the Tapestry Bedroom at Uppark, West Sussex ©National Trust Images/John Miller
A scroll through the photos available on the Trust’s website will have you singing Christmas carols, recalling your very favorite British-isms and traditional Christmas tales. It also has me hankering for the return of Downtown Abbey (the Christmas special last year was the bee’s knees!)
Christmas tree with present in the Tapestry Bedroom at Uppark, West Sussex. ©National Trust Images/John Miller
View of the Dining Hall table set for a Christmas celebration at Tatton Park. This spectacular room is all that survives of the early 18th c. house. ©National Trust Images/Chris Johnson
Traditional Christmas decorations at Batesman’s, East Sussex. A wreath on the door incorporates dried orange slices and cinnamon sticks.©National Trust Images/John Miller
Hall fireplace at Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire. Image via The National Trust
Traditional Victorian Christmas decorations on the tree in the Drawing Room at Standent, West Sussex. ©National Trust Images/John Miller
“Traditional Victorian Christmas decorations made of fir cones, on the banisters at Standen, West Sussex. ©National Trust Images/John Miller
*All photographs in this post are available for purchase from The National Trust. Click on the photo to jump through to the National Trust’s image gallery where you can order a print.