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The Dower House

Beautiful view of Melbourne Pool from balustraded terrace running length of 1831 house. Garden drops steeply by paths and steps to lawn with herbaceous border and bank of flowering shrubs best in June/Sept. Interesting bog garden and other late summer beds. Rose tunnel, glade, orchard, hellebores and small woodland lovely in early spring. Herb garden, other small lawns and vegetable garden.

Children can search for a bronze crocodile, a stone pig, a metal bug and a strange bird. They might also see an iron sunflower hanging in a tree, a bronze girl doing cartwheels, two sleeping dragons and a lion's face. There are seats around the garden for visitors to sit and take in the views.

Saturday 17 February, Sunday 18 February (10am - 4pm). Admission £3.00, children free.
Saturday 16, Sunday 17 June (10am - 5pm). Admission £4.00, children free.
Light refreshments.

Visitors also welcome by arrangement February to September min group size 15, max group size 26 when tour, tea and cake are required. Admission £4.00, children free. Light refreshments.

William & Griselda Kerr
01332 864756

Wheelchair access top half of the garden only. Shoes with a good grip are highly recommended as some slopes are steep. No parking within 50 yards.

How to find us

The Dower House, Church Square, Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8JH

6m S of Derby. 5m W of exit 23A M1. 4m N of exit 13 M42. When in Church Square, turn R at board giving church service times just before church, gates then 50 yds ahead.

More about The Dower House

The Dower House Garden in Melbourne has a breathtaking view facing south over Melbourne Pool. A balustraded terrace runs the length of the house (built 1831 and extended by Adam Architecture in 2015). From it, paths and steps descend either side of a bank covered in roses and shrubs interesting the year round, to the lower lawn. An herbaceous border, at its best mid July, runs down one side of the lawn whilst opposite is a hot bed of vibrant red and yellows at its peak in August and September. Beyond the rose tunnel which divides the garden, two paths lead into a bog garden and glade, down to a small boat house. From here the visitor can ascend a steep path through the orchard to a small woodland, at its best in spring. The woodland path takes the visitor past snowdrops in February and rhododendrons in spring through an arch to the hellebore and hosta beds, passing interesting trees including Tilia henryana, Cornus 'Venus', Cornus 'Eddie's White Wonder' and Davidia involucrata 'Sonoma'. At the rear of the house, there is a fruit cage and iris bed. The vegetable garden is accessible from the greenhouse or from the front courtyard where sweet peas climb through obelisks and roses cover the adjacent stable and cottage walls. Almost all the planting has been made since 2004.

Parking is very limited so visitors are requested to park in Castle Square, Church Square or Penn Lane. The house is next to one of the finest Norman Churches in England – one of Simon Jenkins' ‘top hundred’ and well worth a visit. In the garden, the paths and steps to the lower level are steep and unsuitable for wheelchairs, but the terrace, woodland, rockery, rose garden and vegetable garden can all be reached avoiding any steps. The view from the terrace is worth a visit: it never fails to please, whatever the time of year.