An exhibition showcasing the great British dinner party will be held at Sudeley Castle this winter, offering visitors a rare insight into some of the most opulent dining rooms of castles and stately homes across the country.

The event, which runs from November 4 until December 21, will see a series of spectacular images displayed throughout the castle, taken by the late fine art and society photographer, Sir Geoffrey Shakerley, who was a photographer favoured by the Royal family.

It offers visitors a fascinating glimpse into the world of high-society dining and includes tables set out for elegant meals at royal and stately houses including Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Anglesey Abbey, Waddeson Manor and Clarence House.

The exhibition culminates in the Sudeley Castle library, where a beautiful table is set for a formal dinner party, as in the past and on occasions still might be held at Sudeley The table will be laid out with a selection of fine porcelain and glass, antique silver and other special items from the Castle private collection. 

Sudeley Castle

The exhibition will also include a table set for breakfast and another for a tea party. Visitors will have the unique chance to meet Sudeley Castle's own butler at a series of public sessions. 

Sudeley Castle's chatelaine, Elizabeth, Lady Ashcombe, said she was delighted to be able to show these beautiful and intimate photographs, including a rare opportunity to see a table laid for a private dinner of the Queen's. I am so pleased that Geoffrey Shackerly's generous legacy to Sudeley can again be enjoyed by our visitors.

As Christmas approaches, Sudeley Castle will undergo a festive makeover as it opens its doors to visitors in December for the first time this year.

The castle, which is in the beautiful Cotswolds market town of Winchcombe, has extended its opening season until December 21st offering visitors the chance to enjoy this magical time of year at one of the country's most spectacular castle settings.

As the winter evenings draw in, the castle and gardens will be illuminated by a spectacular lighting display as Sudeley hosts the breath-taking "Spectacle of Light" event on selected dates throughout December.

Visitors can follow the White Rabbit along a beautiful illuminated trail and meet some of the fabulous characters from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Also marvel at the glorious lighting displays of meteors, Moroccan lanterns, a field of poppies and much more.

Tickets to the Spectacle of Light can be bought online or by phone on 01242 705 555, or in person at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham. Tickets are not available directly from Sudeley Castle.

A new festive menu will be on offer in the terrace restaurant and a new series of Christmas craft workshops are also taking place at Sudeley Castle throughout November and December. Visitors can learn how to create beautiful hand-made crackers, decorate baubles, or try their hand at seasonal hand-lettering or marbling.

The craft workshops run on selected dates from 10am-11.30am and cost £45-£50 each, including admission to Sudeley Castle and gardens for the day. For further details visit

And if that's not enough, Sudeley Castle's newly refurbished exhibition is open daily until December 21st, telling the dramatic 1,000 year history of the site. The exhibition is included with general admission.

Sudeley is the only private castle in England to have a queen buried within its grounds - Katherine Parr, the last of Henry VIII's six wives. Visitors can explore the beautifully restored 15th century church where she lies entombed.

The estate is also home to The Pheasantry, a collection of 16 rare and endangered species of birds from around the world, a huge new wooden fun fort and adventure playground.

To find out more about visiting Sudeley Castle and Gardens visit or phone 01242 602 308.


Sudeley Castle & Gardens
Sudeley Castle

COVID UPDATE - Tickets must be purchased in advance and a face covering or mask worn when inside any building. Award-winning gardens surrounding Castle and medieval ruins. Exhibitions, rare-breeds pheasantry, restaurant & cafe, adventure play area.

Festive Craft Workshops
Festive Craft Workshops

Get into the festive spirit with a range of Christmas workshops held at Sudeley Castle for the first time...



Nobody has commented on this post yet, why not send us your thoughts and be the first?

Leave a Reply