One of the leading historians of his generation, David Starkey is a respected author and broadcaster. He specialised in Tudor history at Cambridge and lectured for 25 years at the London School of Economics. He has written numerous works on British history, covering periods from the Magna Carta to the present day. His landmark television series include Elizabeth (2000), Monarchy (2004-7), The Churchills (2012) and Reformation: Europe's Holy War (2017). Often outspoken and unafraid to voice his opinions, David is also an accomplished public speaker.
Yorkshire’s great country houses with David Starkey
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Yorkshire's grand stately homes boast Capability Brown landscapes, Vanbrugh masterpieces and Adam interiors. Graced with great works of art and priceless antiques, they reveal the region's vivid history. Who better to help bring them to life than the TV presenter and celebrated historian David Starkey?
On this new four-day tour, David will join you for dinner and a talk at Newby Hall - built in the 1690s by Sir Christopher Wren - and a guided visit to the 18th-century Harewood House. You'll also enjoy an expert tour of Temple Newsam, on the outskirts of Leeds, Treasurer's House behind York Minster and Sutton Park, home of Samantha Cameron's father Sir Reginald Sheffield.
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"Yorkshire's grandest and most beautiful country houses symbolise the values of an elite and I'll be asking you to re-enter the minds, the habits, the tastes, of the people who built them. This will be a fun and challenging few days, so you're guaranteed to learn with a smile on your face."
- David Starkey
Reasons to book
Exclusive events with David Starkey
Visit stunning gardens
See magnificent interiors
Your expert guide
- Exclusive talk and Q&A with David Starkey
- Three nights' accommodation at The Ripon Spa Hotel
- All visits and tours as detailed
- Breakfast every day
- Meals as detailed, including two dinners at the hotel and one private dinner in the Orangery of Newby Hall
- Dedicated Travel Editions tour manager
Free signed David Starkey book (one per booking)**
£100 per couple* discount for Telegraph subscribers**
** Telegraph subscribers only
Telegraph subscribers: £985*pp
Non-Telegraph subscribers: £1,035*pp
Day1Arrive in YorkshireRipon, United Kingdom
Arrive and check in to the Ripon Spa Hotel and enjoy a welcome dinner.
Day2Sutton ParkSutton-on-the-Forest, United Kingdom
Visit Sutton-on-the-Forest, a village mentioned in the Domesday Book which has been in the possession of either the Crown or the nobility for most of the past thousand years. It's also famous for being where Laurence Sterne, the Anglican Vicar of All Hallows Church wrote the first two volumes of Tristram Shandy. You'll also enjoy a guided tour of Sutton Park, purchased in 1963 by Sir Reginald Sheffield, the father of Samantha Cameron. Sir Reginald is a direct descendant of John Sheffield, the 1st Duke of Buckingham and the man responsible for building Buckingham House, better known as Buckingham Palace. After lunch (not included) you'll take a tour of Treasurer's House. Nestled behind York Minster, this is the first house to be donated to the National Trust complete with its contents.
Day3Temple Newsam and Newby HallLeeds, United Kingdom
Today you'll visit Temple Newsam, a fine Tudor-Jacobean mansion on the outskirts of Leeds with 1,500 acres of parkland landscaped by Capability Brown. Named after the Knights Templar - who once owned the lands - this is the birthplace of Lord Darnley, husband of Mary Queen of Scots. In an interview for Radio 4's Front Row, ex-Culture Minister Mark Fisher placed Temple Newsam House in the top three non-national museums in the country. You'll explore Ripon this afternoon before your evening visit to Newby Hall. David Starkey will join you for dinner and give a lively - and no doubt provocative - talk about the historical significance of the house you're visiting.
Day4Harewood HouseHarewood, United Kingdom
Today you will again be joined by David Starkey for a visit to Harewood House, built in the 18th century and now home to an exceptional art collection, renowned bird garden and farm experience. After lunch (not included) you'll explore Fountains Abbey and William Burges Church. Veiled in a secluded valley, this National Trust property promises to captivate with its vast Cistercian abbey ruins, Georgian water garden, medieval deer park, Elizabethan hall and Gothic church. In Porter's Lodge uncover the story of the devout monks who founded the abbey in search of a simpler life and see the mill created by these skillful masters of machinery. Studley Royal Water Garden is an outstanding example of the 'English' garden style that swept across Europe during the 18th century, and is what makes this magnificent estate a World Heritage Site. Created by father and son John and William Aislabie, the design of this garden is a pre-cursor to the style that later became synonymous with Capability Brown, in which elegant ponds and cascades entwine with rustic bridges, classical temples and statues.
Ripon Spa Hotel
Elegant family-owned hotel in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales
This charming four-star hotel is set in eight acres of landscaped grounds within the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. Privately owned by the same family for a century, the property is just minutes from Fountains Abbey and a short walk from Ripon's ancient market square. You'll be based here for three nights and enjoy breakfast and dinner. Each room has a coffee and tea-maker, flat-screen TV, free toiletries and complimentary wireless internet access.
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