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Welcome to Leeds Castle, Kent

Opening Times

GROUNDS OPEN 10.00am

CASTLE OPEN 10.30am

LAST ADMISSION 3.00pm (Oct - Mar)
4.30pm (Apr - Sep)

GATES CLOSE 5.00pm (Oct - Mar)
6.00pm (Apr - Sep)

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CELEBRATING 900 YEARS

What’s On

Leeds Castle Summertime App27th July to 31st August

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Afternoon Tea in The Castle Dining Room Afternoon Tea

DATES ADDED
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Children's Adventure Golf Parties1st to 31st August

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The Leeds Castle 10K Run1st September

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The Leeds Castle Family Fun Run1st September

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ACCOMMODATION

Come and stay in the grounds of “The Loveliest Castle in the World”

Holiday Cottages


Historic properties located within the Leeds Castle Estate
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Bed and Breakfast

Twenty two luxury en-suite bedrooms within the Maiden’s Tower and Stable Courtyard
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Knight’s Glamping

Escape to the countryside for a glamorous camping holiday in one of our eight splendid striped pavilions
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Battel Hall Logo

Leeds Castle's New 5 Star Country House Venue

HOSPITALITY

Leeds Castle provides first class service and events for all occasions

Weddings

Say 'I do' in the most romantic of settings, "the loveliest castle in the world".
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Conferences

Let us cater for all your business needs in a choice of historic venues. 
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Banquets


Celebrate a special occasion with fine dining and first class service.
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Leeds Castle News

  • 'Then and Now' Leeds and Broomfield Cricket Club

    To commemorate Leeds Castle’s 900th anniversary, we have released a series of photographs entitled ‘Then and Now’. 

    Using images from the Castle’s archives, we have replicated pictures of past staff and family members using the modern Leeds Castle teams. 

    One image that was uncovered from the archive was a circa 1900s shot of ‘Leeds Cricket Club’ as it was then – now known as ‘Leeds and Broomfield Cricket Club’. 

    Our PR Officer invited the current team in to recreate the photograph on the exact same spot on the Castle’s drawbridge and this is the result! 

    We would like to thank Club President Dave Wratten, Chairman Rick Mustill and 1st XI Captain Max Aitken for helping us make this fantastic photo happen. 

    The full set of ‘Then and Now’ pictures will be on exhibition in the Castles Queen’s Bedroom until Christmas.  

  • A dazzling celebration at the Carnival of History!

    On Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th July, thousands of visitors flocked to Leeds Castle from across Kent to celebrate its 900th anniversary with the Carnival of History.

    Visitors were treated to a whole weekend of family friendly activities including authentic re-enactment shows, pop-up music performances, large-scale costumes and a spectacular riot of colour and celebration. 

     For the first time, 900 years of history came to life with nine centuries of professional performers, artists, dancers and community groups processing through the estate and culminating in a grand finale with tightrope walkers and daytime fireworks. Never before has the historic Castle seen such diversity represented through the various participants who came together to celebrate this landmark anniversary. 

    The 900 years has already been marked with a limited edition gin, a time capsule, a specially-commissioned tribute premiered at the Classical Concert and the opening of The Knights’ Stronghold Playground and an adventure golf course. 

    Chief Executive Sir David Steel expressed his joy over the success of the Carnival of History with “Two years ago, we decided that we should have an event that was unique to mark the 900th anniversary of Leeds Castle. My only stipulation was the widest possible community engagement. This weekend Leeds Castle delivered an event which went well beyond my wildest expectations. This weekend, Leeds Castle celebrated 900 years in a style that I think will be remembered by everyone who came for a very long time to come. So many people were involved in making it a very special weekend and I could not be more grateful to everyone for entering the spirit of the occasion and, in some cases, wearing the most wonderful period costumes.”  

     

  • Behind the Teams: Leeds Castle Falconry and Wildlife Manager

    As part of our new ‘Behind the Teams’ series, step behind the scenes of Leeds Castle and hear from the experts who work here about their day-to-day work, where their passions lie, and what their jobs involve.


    1. How long have you been at Leeds Castle? 

    I started at Leeds Castle on the 6th February 2012, so just over 7 years. 

    2. What does a typical day at work look like to you? 

    When dealing with animals there is no such thing as a typical day, that’s what makes the job so entertaining and different. But usually - and most importantly - it starts with a cup of tea! In the morning, we check on all of our birds; give them fresh water and a clean; put the birds out on weathering ground for visitors to see; clean out the Mews (overnight quarters) and prepare their food for the day. I also have a team who will be out doing a daily Swan count, feed and checking on the wildlife and nesting birds. Throughout the year, we even run pre-booked falconry experiences and do a daily visitor demonstration at 2pm. 

    3. How many of you are in the falconry team? 

    My team currently consists of four staff members and 14 wonderful volunteers.

    4. What’s your favourite thing about your job? And have you always wanted to become a falconer?

    I’ve always wanted to be a Falconer. From the very first day I saw two Barn Owls flown at a demonstration when I was 3, it’s been a dream of mine to do this for a living. But it’s hard to pick one favourite part of the job as its generally just amazing being able to work with such beautiful creatures and have an amazing team of staff. The joy we get from seeing our visitors’ faces light up as the birds fly past them on experience days and at the demonstrations makes all of our work worthwhile. 

    5. You work with a lot of different breeds – do you have a personal favourite?

     It’s difficult to pick a favourite Bird of Prey out of the 28 we currently have. They all have their own characteristics and each day can be different depending on their mood. But as for the 26 Swans we have, I have 2 favourites - Pickles, our 28 year old male Whooper Swan and Tibias, our male Trumpeter Swan. Both of these birds have great personalities and can often be spotted wandering across the Estate. 

    6. Best spot on the estate for visitors to spot some great wildlife? 

     We’re very lucky at Leeds Castle to have such a mix of Wildlife on the estate, waterways and lakes. As you walk up through the Wooldland Walk you can often spot Kingfishers flying along the stream, as well as swans, ducks, moorhens and coots on the small ponds. If you’re very lucky you might even spot Buzzards and Kestrels. If you look closely at the Boat House you’ll see two arches, in the left side one you’ll see a metal rod that we placed there for Kingfishers to perch on and use for fishing. Of course, on the Moat and Great Water you’ll always see our Swans, Ducks, Geese, Guls and more. 

    7.  Anything visitors should look out for in 2019? 

     2019 is already an extremely busy year for us in the Falconry & Wildlife department - we currently have 3 black swan nests (with a total of 18 eggs!), and many of our ducks and geese are already nesting across the Estate. We built five new aviaries at the end of last year at our Bird of Prey Centre, two of which we’ve converted into breeding aviaries. I’m pleased to say that we now have our pair of Harris Hawks currently sitting and incubating three eggs, so fingers crossed they’re fertile and all hatch! The plan will be to keep and fly all three together in our demonstrations. We’re also on the lookout for a new female Burrowing Owl to go with Jack, our five year old male, so we can hopefully breed them as well.

     

  • Building American Connections

    On Monday 27th May, Leeds Castle was delighted to receive a delegation from Fairfax County, Virginia. Leeds Castle has a 370 year shared history with Virginia. 

    In 1649, a tract of land in Virginia was granted to the Culpeper family who had owned Leeds Castle since 1632. In 1677 Thomas, 2nd Lord Culpeper was appointed as Governor of Virginia, and spent six years travelling back and forth between the two countries. After his death in 1689, his daughter Catherine inherited both Leeds Castle and the Virginia lands in 1710. 

    During the day, a friendship agreement was signed between Leeds Castle and the City and County of Fairfax. We look forward to a fruitful future relationship. 

    The US delegation was made up of: 

    Mr Barry Biggar, President/CEO Visit Fairfax

    The Hon Sharon Bulova, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors County of Fairfax

    The Hon Justin E Fairfax, Lieutenant Governor, Commonwealth of Virginia

    Ms Christina Fullmer, Office of the Chairman County of Fairfax

    Mr Bryan Hill, County Executive County of Fairfax

    The Hon John Mason, Former Mayor City of Fairfax

    The Hon David L Meyer, Mayor City of Fairfax

    Ms Linda S Sullivan, President/CEO ArtsFairfax

    Dr S David Wu, Provost /Executive Vice President George Mason University

    Mrs Sheau-Ping Wu, wife of Dr Wu


    *Alternate Text*



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