The earliest record of a garden at Swinton Park is of one laid out in 1699 to a design by George London, with fountains added a few years later, which was probably situated to the east of the building. This was most likely swept away by William Danby during the 1760’s as part of his landscaping programme. A painting of c1815 only shows an informal garden with lawns and a shrubbery.
Visitors are welcome to walk in the grounds throughout the year – it can take up to two and a half hours to complete all of the routes. We ask that dogs are kept under control and that all gates are kept shut.
The lakes were designed during the 1760’s, when the Danby family were in residence at Swinton. During the early 1800’s, the stone bridge at Coffin Pond was built, and the stone coffins which were dug up in a nearby quarry, were laid out beside the boathouse. It is thought that they date from the Saxon period, and that they were coffins for the nuns in the local nunnery.
The parkland is divided from the castle by the serpentine stretch of water, Home Lake, designed to give the impression of a river. It supports a herd of approximately 100 fallow deer, including 10 bucks. Some of these are very pale in colour – commonly mistaken for albino.
To the west of the castle there is a rockery, with a sunken path and rockwork steps, and the remains of an icehouse. From here the lawn rises to a Gothick orangery which is now in disrepair, although the boiler house at the rear and underfloor pipework is still in evidence. Below this, across the pebbled path, there is a game larder.
Explore our 4 acre natural walled garden. Throughout the year, seasonal produce from the Walled Garden regularly features on the restaurant and cookery school menus. Over 60 varieties of fruit and vegetables have been planted such as squash, courgettes, rhubarb, strawberries, alpine strawberries, Jerusalem artichokes and a very wide range of herbs.
Lake Island at Swinton Park is a private retreat, deep in the Parkland, where you can hold an exclusive celebration or private event. Take a hand-drawn cable ferry across to your own private kingdom, complete with a miniature Georgian-style summerhouse. The House can be transformed into a romantic setting with flowers, candles and twinkling fairy lights, creating the perfect venue for a proposal or anniversary celebration.