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Historic farmhouse in Windermere celebrates 70th anniversary

L-R: Historic Townend, Townend carvings and Townend comes to life with colour in the spring and summer. National Trust images c. James Dobson

[A] celebration to mark 70 years of being open to the public of historic farmhouse, Townend, is planned at the house on Sunday 1 April.

The National Trust care for Townend, a traditional Lake District stone and slate farmhouse in the Troutbeck Valley. Opened on 1 April 1948, Townend’s fascinating stories and quirky objects attract around 20,000 visitors per year.

Property Manager Emma Wright said “It’s a privilege to be able to celebrate 70 years of being open to the public as a visitor attraction – in that time I would expect that more than one million visits have been made to the house”

“We wanted to mark the occasion (which actually falls on Easter Sunday) in some way. So, as well as running our Cadbury Easter Egg Hunt, we are offering our first 50 visitors on Sunday afternoon a piece of birthday cake.”

The house dates back to 1650 and was lived in by 12 generations of the Browne family from that time up until the 1940s. When the Browne family line died out, the house was temporarily owned by businessman Oswald Hedley until his sudden death in 1945. Oswald’s widow, Edith, transferred the house and 800 acre estate to the UK Government in part payment of their death duties bill – it was valued at just over £6,000.

The Government then transferred the house and land to the National Trust to be looked after in perpetuity. The house still retains original wooden furniture which was hand carved by the Browne family.

Townend is open Wednesday to Sunday plus Bank Holiday Mondays from 1-4.30pm last admission, with morning tours at 11am and 12noon on a first come, first served basis. Over the Easter weekend, the Cadbury Easter Egg Hunt will run from 1-4pm daily and costs £1.50 per trail.

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