Lyveden Manor, near Oundle, is set to become a visitor attraction after it has undergone extensive renovation to restore its most important rooms. The manor, built by the Tresham family in 1570, was owned privately until 2013, when it was purchased by the National Trust.
New visitor facilities will include a shop and cafe at the manor, as well as parking, in order to protect the upper gardens and Lyveden New Bield.
The Trust plans to renovate the house and provide visitors with an opportunity to experience Sir Thomas Tresham’s garden landscape in the sequence that he intended, with mown paths leading up to Lyveden New Bield.
Ian Cooper, who was speaking for the National Trust at a council planning meeting in January said: “Lyveden has a rare and important Elizabethan garden created by Thomas Tresham as an expression of his tastes and Catholicism. It gives visitors today a unique experience.
“Our proposals are informed by extensive research into the manor. We will reinstate the great chamber on the first floor and we have worked hard to design a new scheme. We believe our proposal will result in significant visitor growth.”
The main attraction at Lyveden is Lyveden New Bield, which was originally planned to be an Elizabethan summer house designed to reflect his Catholic faith. When Tresham died in 1605, the building work stopped, and was abandoned after his son was involved in the Gunpowder Plot. The manor remained in the Tresham family until 1649.
More than 34,000 people visit Lyveden New Bield annually. The National Trust has a fundraising project to raise £1 million for enhancements and improvements.