Birdsall House is home to the Willoughby family. Set on the edge of the Yorkshire Wolds, with breath taking views, this stunning house Is not normally open to the public and remains very much a family home.

The house was built in several stages dating from 1540 and is home to a fascinating collection of artworks and chattels, collected by this remarkable family. 

Birdsall House was initially a small Tudor house built by the Sotheby family in 1540, following the dissolution of the Monasteries. The Willoughby family married into the Sotheby family in 1719 and the house was increased in size and given a Georgian look. In 1873 the architect Anthony Salvin remodelled and significantly enlarged the house once again to what we see today.  James and Cara Willoughby live in Birdsall House with their 3 children and 3 dogs.

We offer you a guided tour by a member of the Willoughby family and show you around Birdsall House, looking at treasures such as the unbroken line of family portraits, dating from 1573 to the present day. Highlights can be seen by artists such as Sir Joshua Reynolds and Pompeo Batoni with furniture by Thomas Chippendale. We end with a cup of tea and, if the weather is fine, a wander around the gardens.

This property is viewable only through Invitation to View

Tour features

A welcome and brief history of Birdsall House and Willoughby family followed by a guided tour of our grand state reception rooms on the ground floor and three bedrooms upstairs. This is followed by tea and biscuits in The Dining Room.


From Malton drive due south, up the Gallops and across the crossroads and on to the village of Birdsall. Once you pass the Church the entrance to the drive is at the top of the hill on the right (postcode YO17 9NU). Follow the drive, taking a left turn at the crossroads and stay on this road until you cross the cattle grid and drive up to the house.

From the south take the A64 & then A166 to Bridlington. Turn left at the top of Garrowby Hill, signposted to Malton, and following the signposts to Birdsall. Once in Birdsall follow Satnav to YO17 9NU and you will reach the entrance to the drive. Follow as above.


Tea and biscuits.

Access notes

To the ground floor only. Gravel drive and three shallow steps up to the ground floor. Can put a ramp up the steps but need advance warning to do so. No wheelchair access to bedrooms.


No dogs, No stillettos, No photography in the house.


Interested? Click the button below to see available dates. If you're a member and are logged in you'll be able to see the discounted option also.


2020 tour dates

  • 6 May
  • 1, 4 & 13 July
  • 8 September

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All 2019 tours are £20 per person, with a discount for Historic Houses members.

Upcoming events

6 May 2020

Birdsall House, Yorks

Built originally in 1540s, Birdsall House is set in stunning scenery and is home to the Willoughby family. Their fascinating family history is brought to life through a collection of tales, exceptional furniture and artwork, including an unbroken line of family portraits from 1570s. A gem of a house not normally open to the public.