Belton House became part of the National Trust in 1984.  

Sitting elegantly in formal gardens with views across pleasure grounds and an ancient deer-park, Belton is often cited as being the perfect example of an English country-house estate. 

Although built on a modest scale, it has a fine collection of porcelain and silver, a world-renowned library and architectural finesse that reflects the continued wealth and cultured tastes of its former owners, the Brownlow family.  

In more recent times, Belton has become a popular destination for families in search of outdoor fun, with seasonal trails and the National Trust’s largest outdoor adventure playground.

Learning at Belton House
With over 300 years of history and beautiful parkland and gardens, Belton House provides an award winning, inspirational setting for visitors of all ages.  

For schools
Led by experienced guides, there’s a range of tours and workshops available in the House or Gardens. We also provide self-led resources and background resources for teachers to help them to lead their own visits to Belton. 

Each tour and workshop is developed to support the National Curriculum and through consultation with local teachers, helping pupils to actively engage whether they are choosing their favourite flowers in the Orangery or exploring a family portrait. The learning programmes are designed to help develop knowledge, understanding and empathy through exploring Belton’s collections and stories. By sharing ideas and discoveries, the learning team aim to inspire and enrich your pupils’ learning during your visit. 

Our aim is to be seen as the ‘house next door’, and the learning team is always happy to work with schools and colleges to support project-based or other learning opportunities and bespoke visits.  

For Families
Belton House is unique within the National Trust as we also have a Play Department. Working in partnership, the Play and Learning teams create a programme of activities, tours, self-led guides and playful opportunities for families to take part in. This includes taking part in the 50 Things before you’re 11 ¾ campaign, self-led resources to borrow to explore the gardens through art and nature and tours and ‘popup talks’ using slow looking and Visible Thinking.  

Specifically for the pre-schoolers, we run a toddler group twice a month using stories, rhymes, crafts and toddles to explore the house and gardens. This year we’ve teamed up with Nick Butterworth to create a Percy the Park Keeper themed year long programme with a trail, interactive gallery space and forest school inspired, playful experiences in the gardens. 

Working with local colleges
For the last three years we have worked in partnership with our local college to provide meaningful work experience opportunities for Grantham’s students. Whether this has been art students’ first opportunity to work with a heritage site to create an artwork for display or students undertaking childcare or travel and tourism courses and their working with the learning team to create new tours and activities.  

Ask our team about …
Our learning team is one full time learning manager and 24 volunteers, one of our challenges over the next few months will be how we can continue to work collaboratively while self-isolating. As a team we are always keen to explore new ideas, work in new ways and have fun with learning. One of the ways we’ve been having fun over the last few years is using Visible Thinking within our programmes to encourage close looking and deeper engagement with our collections. Another has been developing our Early Years programmes using playful experiences.  

One of our biggest challenges is going to be how we go from a learning programme predominantly onsite, with some outreach sessions to well thought out, high quality online engagement  

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