Rare glimpse inside a Georgian folly

A lovingly preserved neoclassical folly in the Midlands is opening its doors for just three days to give visitors a rare glimpse of its 18th century history.

The private residence, provides breathtaking views across the Weston Park estate, the former ancestral home of the Earls of Bradford, and is only open to the public on Sunday 19th, Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st June 2011.

The Temple of Diana, designed by popular English architect, James Paine, was commissioned circa 1750 by Sir Henry Bridgeman, a prolific huntsman of the time. The circular Tea Room was for the lady of the house, Lady Bridgeman, to entertain guests while flaunting the grandeur of the estate, it was later used as photographic dark room by pioneering photographers Lady Lucy and Lady Charlotte Bridgeman in the 1850’s.

The Georgian Temple is prominently situated in the grounds of the estate and is elaborately decorated inside to the Goddess of Hunting, Diana.

The exclusive opening will include access to the great glazed Orangery with six 15 foot arched windows and an Adams ornamental ceiling plus a circular tea room, enveloped by the paintings depicting the life of the goddess.

Gareth Williams, Weston Park’s curator, said: “Many visitors admire the Temple from afar but few can actually appreciate the fine interiors and  the far reaching vistas across Capability Brown’s Parkland.

“Our thanks go to the tenant who has kindly given permission to open the Temple and provide visitors with this unique slice of history.”

The Temple of Diana is open on Sunday 19th, Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st June, tickets are £3 per person in addition to standard admission. Availability is limited and tickets must be pre-booked by calling 01952 852100.

For further information please visit Weston Park Temple