Mummy Diaries | A New Year’s Walk around Lyveden

Facade of the unfinished New Bield at Lyveden in Northamptonshire
I love a New Year’s walk and made the decision to visit a new National Trust property – Lyveden, in Northamptonshire. It looked like somewhere we could walk for miles (well, as much as Alfie would permit) and there’s nothing like fresh air to set you up for that back-to-reality slump! We packed a picnic and set off in the car, aiming to arrive before lunchtime.

Lyveden is home to an unfinished Grade I building (known as the New Bield) which was supposed to be a summer house, while the manor house is referred to as the Old Bield and is also open to the public – although we didn’t go inside.

Then, there are the formal gardens, a vast open space to walk around. The orchard boasts line upon line of fruit trees, including apple, pear, plum and damson. We hoped to walk around the labyrinth, but I’m assuming that due to the season, the paths hadn’t been mowed – a shame, as it was something Alfie was looking forward to. We will have to return in the spring/summer.

From various points of the grounds at Lyveden, you can embark on longer walks – the Wadenhoe loop is six miles, while the Fermyn Woods loop is 4.5 miles. Fermyn Woods Country Park is pretty much next to the estate. I’d love to go on one of the walks when it gets a bit warmer!

little boy jumping on the top of a large hill

Alfie enjoyed climbing all the mounds – even if some of them were quite steep! The gardens aren’t completely accessible, but paths are marked out for ease. I’m glad Ash got our wellies out of the shed, as they were definitely needed in patches.

We decided to walk around first, before lunch and I think we must have explored for over an hour, also going into the unfinished garden lodge (which was such a cool experience) – before heading to the café to grab a hot drink and a bite to eat. I do love a National Trust café, and there are always so many yummy snacks and sweet treats. With it still acceptable to eat Christmas food, I had a mincemeat Bakewell and gingerbread latte (I couldn’t believe there were still PSLs on the menu), while Ash had a cheese scone, and Alfie chose a Mars bar.

One thing I’ve not yet mentioned, and another thing we didn’t check out, is the second-hand bookshop, which is housed on the second floor of the manor. Known as the common room, it’s a place to sit and relax, and I believe there are often temporary exhibitions too – something to look out for next time, perhaps. Next time, we’ll have to aim to arrive a little earlier to also visit the nearby country park – you can’t beat a good woodland walk… and Alfie was excited by the play area!

It was nice to visit a new National Trust property, and we must highlight it on our map before deciding on where to go next…

Love, Lucy xx

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Love, Lucy xx

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