National Trust Properties and Gardens

The National Trust is a charity which works to preserve and protect historic places and spaces, and make them available to the public. The National Trust own a large number of properties and land in Devon. We have selected a few here in South Devon within easy reach of Sandays that might be of interest. For more information about opening times and special events throughout the year, please visit the National Trust website.

Please note that the driving times given to these National Trust properties are approximate and may be longer at busy times of day. Please check exact locations and get directions from the National Trust website.

Coleton Fishacre

Coleton Fishacre was built in the 1920s by Rupert and Lady Dorothy D’Oyly Carte( so a relatively new house by the usual National Trust standards) who also developed the gardens and grounds from scratch in a valley running down to a private bathing cove. It is not possible to go down to the cove anymore but the rest is accessible to anyone who can manage the steep paths! Some amazing cacti & tropical style plants and lovely views to the sea.

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The dramatic Knightshayes  was built by Sir John Heathcoat Amory, the grandson of John Heathcoat, creator of the mechanised bobbin lace making machine and owner of a lace factory in Tiverton. Sir John Heathcoat and his family moved to Tiverton in 1816, after their lace making business in Loughborough was destroyed. The foundation stone was laid in 1869 and this large house was developed in spectacular gothic revival style over the years that followed. From the house Sir John could see his factory in Tiverton and some of the dwellings of his workforce!

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Greenway was described by Agatha Christie as “the loveliest place in the world” and if you pay a visit there you will understand that sentiment. It was her holiday home where the family gathered for many happy times and houses the family collection.
Set close to the river Dart there are lovely views and it is also possible to walk down to the riverside.The general feel in the house is that the family have just popped out for a walk.

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Compton Castle

Compton Castle is near Torquay, about 40 mins from Sandays. It is actually quite close to Bradley and the two places can be done easily in one excursion. Compton was originally a manor house that was fortified in the 1520s in order to withstand raids from France. It has an interesting history and links with Sir Walter Raleigh.

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Bradley in Newton Abbott is approximately 25 minutes from Sandays. Bradley is a fascinating medieval manor house set in a green haven of riverside meadows and woodland, only 5 mins from the centre of town. The National Trust draw attention to Art Nouveau textiles and pre-Raphaelite drawings.

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Castle Drogo

Castle Drogo in Drewsteignton is an approximately 45 minute drive from Sandays. The last castle to be built in England this remarkable 20th century fortress holds fascinating 1930’s gadgetry and modern day green technology. The last six years has seen a huge restoration project, due to be completed by the end of 2018. The Castle has remained open to visitors throughout, with much to see and do, and “meet the builder days” to look in detail at the building work.

There are stunning views from Castle Drogo as it sits high on Dartmoor. There is a lovely circular walk that combines a visit to Castle Drogo with a walk around the beautiful Fingle Bridge area, and perhaps a stop at the ever popular Fingle Bridge Inn.

Other options from here are to venture further onto Dartmoor, or a trip to the nearby Stone Lane Gardens Arboretum and Sculptures (registered charity, not NT).
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