- Please note, The Orangery is currently closed for important restoration work. However, you can still appreciate it from the outside.
- Autumn catering opening times: The Stables: open daily, 10am - 5pm; Caffè + Gelato: open Saturday & Sunday only, 10am - 5:30pm
For the keen twitcher, the amateur bird watcher or the casual observer of our feathered friends, we’ve the perfect setting at Hestercombe to get a view of some of Britain’s favourite garden birds.Findings from the recent 40th RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch highlighted that the humble house sparrow remains the most spotted bird in the UK, with 1.2 million sightings over the last weekend of January.
A house sparrow
However, it also showed a decline in the garden sightings of wrens and long-tailed tits. Long-tailed tits decreased by more than 27% and wrens by 17% in 2019.We hold our avian friends in very high regard, and do all we can to encourage them to stay. We leave our Landscape Garden in a natural state as possible and the dead wood piles encourage birds to feast on the insects that make their homes here.Robins, starlings, blackbirds, and our ubiquitous golden Sebright bantams (not your common garden bird!) can all be seen inhabiting over 50 acres of the Hestercombe landscape, along with goldfinches, blue tits and chaffinches.Birds for many people are one of the closest links with nature. Getting out and about and interacting with nature has also been proven to improve wellbeing and have a positive effect on mental health.Why not grab your binoculars and take a perch in one of the many seats that mark the route of the Landscape Garden trail to spot some of our regular and not so obvious birdlife?Martin Harper, Director of Conservation at the RSPB, said: “Birds are such iconic parts of human culture but many of us no longer have the time or opportunity to enjoy them. The time we spend in nature, just watching and listening, can have huge benefits to our wellbeing, especially in these stressful times.”For a full round-up of all the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch results and to see which birds were visiting gardens where you live, visit www.rspb.org.uk/birdwatch