Friday 26 April 2019

Woolsthorpe Manor

Regular readers will know that we love a good day out and many of our adventures come in the form of a trip to National Trust properties. We've been members of the National Trust since a trip to the Lake District a couple of years ago and we try and use our passes at least six times a year.

We are frequent visitors to Belton House and not far from there, and similar travel difference from home, is place we'd never been too, Woolsthorpe Manor. A new place seemed a great way to start our adventures for the year.

Set in a Lincolnshire village, Woolsthorpe Manor is a 17th century manor house and childhood home of Sir Issac Newton. 

Exterior of a stone manor house, with tidy and flower boarders in front of the house

The house and it's surroundings give an interesting insight into Newton's childhood, his upbringing and his early interest in science that lead to his theory of gravity. As always at a National Trust property, we were warmly welcomed by one of the volunteers as we enter the site and again as we entered the manor house. Unfortunately we found that one of the rooms was out of bounds due to some urgent structural works but the volunteer explained the work being done and why, along with the use of the room and some of the artifacts we could see. 

We then ventured into the kitchen, where the room was furnished with items of the era, along with cuttings of herbs and plants that Newton studied. There is also the chance to see some of Newtons' drawings on the wall, with the hard to see ones needing a torch. This was of great interest to JJ and the other children visiting.  

Little boy looking at items on an old wooden table. Items are in wooden bowls from the period.

Little boy being helped to hold a torch as it's shone over a wall drawing

Also set up in a cupboard in the kitchen was an example of a gravity light that has been developed to help those in third world countries, showing Newton's theory still has an effect on the simplist of inventions. 

Upstairs shows the room in which Newton was born, his own room and study area, along with a room painted with facts about him painted on the wall and the importance of his theory with relation to space travel. A selection of TV screens show the Apollo missions, which again was of great interest to the children visiting. 

Interior of a window with a view of an apple tree

Interior of a 17th century bedroom, showing a bed and chair

Little boy looking at an edwardian desk covered in papers and books

A wall with facts printed on it

Father and son watching apollo launches on 4 small screens

Woolsthorpe also features an activity centre that is full of facts on stars, comets and the solar system, which makes interesting reading for the grown-ups and the kids. There is also a short film playing, which shows an introduction into his life from his mother's perspective. 

Photo showing creative play items on a table and display boards in the background

There is also an area for creative and inventive play! JJ loved this and he could have spent hours sitting there. Lego, Gears, puzzles and dressing up items mean the activity centre offers an something of interest to most children. 

Little boy playing with Gears toys

You can also collect a trail sheet from the centre and follow the clues around the outside area to answer the questions. Again, this was very popular with the children but it is more ideal for older children as the scientific facts were all a bit much for JJ who's four years old.

Over at the Science Centre, there's lots of gravity and light themed activities and experiments to try, with grown-ups and adults all having a try.

Little boy playing in the science centre

Little boy playing with a light experiment

White light wall experiment

Little boy looking in circus style distortion mirrors

Outdoors the manor and it's surroundings are picturesque and offer areas to have picnics and ice creams. The orchard gives a chance to see the famous apple tree that helped Newton on his scientific journey. 

Little boy looking at an apple tree

It's easy to see why Woolsthorpe Manor is popular with so many different people. Families enjoy the open space and activities for children, and others enjoy the historical and scientific side of things. Woolsthorpe Manor is an enjoyable day out for the family and we'll definitely head back next year to see the completed restoration work.

As always with my day out posts I like to share the good to know info with you, so here we go....

  • Entry into the manor house is now on a timed ticket system so consider booking before if you want to have a look inside
  • Toilets, baby changing are easily available and are super clean
  • Parking is on the opposite side of the road to the manor house and there's not much pavement so take care when crossing
  • There's park that's a very short walk from the centre, which is definitely worth a visit
  • Ice creams are available from the amazing Bluebells Dairy but are on the pricey side
  • Picnics are allowed but some of the areas are very exposed to the sun so be prepared with sun hats or hunt for some shade if you're there on a very sunny day
Are you heading to a National Trust property soon?

Mummy Snowy Owl

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