Chatsworth house, garden and farmyard opens March 25 with highlights including the first ever RHS Chatsworth Flower Show, House Style, a fashion-led exhibition which will showcase the captivating lives of the Cavendish family, and the completion of the £32.7 million Masterplan restoration project.
Here’s a quick look at some of the highlights visitors to the Derbyshire estate can look forward to this year.
n House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth runs from March 25-October 22. In what will be its largest and most ambitious exhibition to date, House Style will explore the history of fashion and adornment by showcasing the lives of the captivating individuals from the Cavendish family.
Highlights of the exhibition will include personal family collections, including items belonging to the current Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, demonstrating the varying breadth of fashion and adornment from the Devonshire Collection throughout the generations. The show will also include exceptional couture designed by Jean Philippe Worth and Christian Dior, together with influential contemporary garments from designers such as Gucci, Helmut Lang, Margiela, Vivienne Westwood, Erdem, Alexander McQueen, Christopher Kane and Vetements.
n Easter Eggstravaganza. April 8-23. The hugely popular Easter Eggstravaganza is back with its annual Easter Egg hunts, crafts, and rides just some of the activities in store for visitors this season.
n The Dodson & Horrell International Horse Trials. May 12-14. The Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials is three days of thrilling equestrian sport, combined with entertainment for all the family in the beautiful surroundings of Chatsworth. Visitors will enjoy world class competition, from elegant dressage, to exciting show jumping and thrilling cross country. There will also be entertainment and activities for the whole family, and the shopping village with more than 100 high quality trade stands.
n RHS Chatsworth Flower Show. June 11-17. Green-fingered visitors are in for a treat this summer as the highly anticipated RHS Chatsworth Flower Show will take place for the very first time. Visitors will be invited to explore a horticultural wonderland featuring a range of inspirational gardens, displays and features from hotly-tipped designers. There will also be a series of fascinating talks and demonstrations throughout the week for any and all gardening enquiries. Additionally, the show will bring together a selection of the finest independent companies and specialist nurseries, offering a wide-range of design-led products and quality plants.
n VitalityMove with Jessica Ennis-Hill. July 9. Following her appearance as Chatsworth Country Fair President last year, Olympic gold medallist Jessica-Ennis Hill will be returning this summer with her brand-new event, VitalityMove. Aimed at runners of all ages and fitness levels, there will be a range of activities to get involved in from one mile fun-runs and family relays to the more traditional 5k and 10k distances. Keeping the energy high with music throughout the day will be DJ Trevor Nelson.
Chatsworth Country Fair. September 1-3. Following a record-breaking number of visitors last year, Chatsworth Country Fair is back this September and will once again be jam-packed with fun and entertainment for all the family across the stunning estate grounds.
n Masterplan Project Phase Four. Current to November 2017. The final phase of the Masterplan, the monumental renovation and restoration project launched in 2005 with a total value of £32.7million, is now underway with completion scheduled for November 2017.
One of the largest projects undertaken by Chatsworth since the 6th Duke built his great North Wing in the 1820s, this fourth phase focuses on the East side of the house which faces towards the Cascade in the garden, with scaffolding now in place to enable the stone to be cleaned, repointed and repaired. Rotten stones will be removed and replaced with new stone taken from Burntwood Quarry, the location of the stone used to build the North Wing. Once the work is completed, all the facades of the house will appear newly rejuvenated. Other work includes replacing coverings on 23 roofs; installing hundreds of roof vents and thermal insulation; joinery repairs and rebuilding chimney stacks.
The Orangery rooflight will be restored and solar and UV film will be applied to the glass to keep the building cool in hot summer months.
For more information on all of the above, visit www.chatsworth.org