Polesden Lacey is an Edwardian house (expanded from an earlier building) and estate. It is located on the North Downs at Great Bookham, near Dorking, Surrey, England. It is owned and run by the National Trust and is one of the Trust's most popular properties.
This Regency house was extensively remodelled in 1906 by Margaret Greville, a well-known Edwardian hostess. Her collection of fine paintings, furniture, porcelain and silver is displayed in the reception rooms and galleries, as it was at the time of her celebrated house parties.
It also refers to its grounds of 1,400 acres (5.6 square kilometres) including a walled rose garden, lawns, ancient woodland and landscape walks.
The future George VI and Queen Elizabeth spent part of their honeymoon here in 1923.
Polesden Lacey Today:
Polesden Lacey was left to the National Trust by Mrs Greville in 1942 in memory of her father, William McEwan (she was his illegitimate daughter and sole heir). There was a serious fire in 1960, which caused damage but not serious loss. In 1995 the National Trust embarked on a programme of restoration and renovation. In 2008/9 the visitor facilities were fairly extensively re-furbished, with a new car park, cafe, shop and farm shop. It received 289,889 visitors in 2012–2013 and 297,325 in 2011–2012, placing it in the Trust's top ten most-visited properties.
Some areas of the house are not currently open to the public. This is because in 1942 it was thought that the bedrooms and servant's areas would not be of interest to visitors. The first floor of the mansion is used by the National Trust Regional Office for London and the South East. The old servants' areas (on the ground floor) are used by the Polesden Lacey staff as offices. In the future, it is hoped that more of the mansion will be open to the public. This began in March 2011 with the opening of Mrs Greville's private apartment which had been occupied by the House Manager. The house is open to the public seven days a week from March to October. On weekday mornings admission is via a short themed tour.
There are a number of walks around the Polesden Lacey estate, especially in the valley that the main house overlooks. The estate includes a Youth Hostel, Tanners Hatch.
The re-modelling of the facilities in 2008–2009 means that the cafe and shop (as well as the walks) can now be accessed without paying for admission.
Polesden Lacey also has open-air performing facilities, which are used during the summer to host various musical and theatrical events. In 2009 there was the Polesden Lacey Festival.