This weekend is the Spring bank holiday weekend and on Sunday Eaton Hall near Chester will opening its gates and running one of its 4 annual charity open days. Eaton Hall is a private estate owned by the Duke of Westminster and as such is not normally open to the public, however when they do open the gardens (the house remains private) it is a lovely day out with beautiful grounds and a narrow-gauge steam train called Katie for the children (and grown-ups) to ride on.
Last year we went to 3 of the 4 open days and had a wonderful time. Because it is a private estate there isn’t a cafe as you would expect in National trust sites and so on, but refreshments are on sale in the inner courtyard, or you can do as we do and take a picnic to eat on the grass.
Sadly the first open day of this year at Easter was cancelled as melting snow had saturated the grounds, so we have not visited since last year. We went in the summer and had a great time. We went on the steam train which my Thomas the Tank Engine obsessed son loved, then sat on the grass and played football. Well, the kids played with their dad and I sat and watched.
If you live near Chester and have never been it is definitely worth a visit and is a good way to support local charities. This year’s charities are the Chester Childbirth Appeal, Motor Neurone Disease Association Cheshire and the Three Villages Project.