View the inner workings of this full restoration project. Continuously inhabited since Domesday, Pevsner called Grade I-listed Halswell 'the most important house of its date in the county'.

The Tudor Manor and 1689 Baroque wing sit in C18 parkland with temples, follies and lakes. The house is contents-free while undergoing complete restoration. 

These private, behind-the-scenes, restoration tours will be given by the owner Edward Strachan or the art & architecture historian Roy Bolton. Since the Baroque Wing was added in 1683-89 the old manor became hidden and mostly put over to services, it has languished in this condition until the current full restoration of the house and estate was begun. The visitor will hear about this tale of two houses and the characters who built the estate until it was broken up in 1950. The house is a rare an important example of English Baroque architecture, even rarer is the ability to see the hands-on revival of the house, which has been in a desperate state for the last 65 years. 

Visitors will be given access to all the areas of the house and grounds that are not closed for necessary restoration purposes. The walk to Mill Wood to see the C18th water gardens being restored, folly by folly, is for the hearty of lung and leg (walking boots needed). For those who would rather keep to the house and its immediate environs, most of the Tudor and Baroque wings will be open, including the roof where a leaving drink can be enjoyed with views to Glastonbury Tor and Wales.

This property is viewable only through Invitation to View

Tour features

All the state rooms in the Baroque Wing and many in the old manor house can be viewed. The cellars and roof are open for those willing to climb stairs. There are many follies close to the house but the walk to the 18th century pleasure gardens, Mill Wood, is a must for those with walking boots.


The estate gates are at the cross roads in the village of Goathurst. There is parking marked near the main house at the top of that drive. The post code will take you past the house and into the stable courtyard, so ignore that final destination; once you see the house you will see the parking area.


Tea/coffee and sandwiches on arrival and leaving drinks at the Temple of Harmony.

Access notes

While restorations are ongoing, disabled access is currently limited to accessible areas on the ground floor.


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.


2019 tour dates

  • 7 June
  • 19 July

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Historic Houses members get discounts on all Invitation to View tours. Open the login page as a new tab, login, then refresh this page, or click login then search for this property using the search bar at the top.



All 2019 tours are £15.00 per person, with a discount for Historic Houses members.