Acton Scott Historic Working Farm, located in an area of outstanding natural beauty, demonstrates life on a Shropshire upland farm at the turn of the 20th century. Visitors to the farm become familiar with the rural heritage of England, thus encouraging its preservation.
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The farm was the focus of a television series, Victorian Farm, using real people who lived and worked on the farm for a year as Victorians would have done.
The farm estate is named after the Acton family who have owned it for almost 900 years. Made up of stone and timber framed cottages, small farmsteads, woodland and pasture, it adds up to 1500 acres. Acton Scott Hall, a Grade II listed Elizabethan mansion built in 1580 is the home of the family and is not open to the public.
The 18th century home farm buildings were preserved by Thomas Acton a hundred years ago. Daily activities and special events put the visitor in the picture. (Check the website for dates of specific events.)
Demonstrations of activities such as blacksmithing, milking, butter churning and other rural skills of the time take place. Heavy horses are used to work the land. Farmyard animals are raised (don’t miss the baby ones in the incubators) and include pigs and chickens. There’s a fish pond and ducks meandering in the grounds.
Yearly special events such as sheep-shearing, lambing, cider making and steam powered threshing enhance the experience at the farm. A Victorian Christmas is particularly popular. Courses on rural trades and crafts as well as Victorian housekeeping are on offer.
Other attractions are a cartwheel maze, a brick kiln, woodland crafts area, a dairy, threshing barn, forge, granary, wheelwright shop, stables, and cow house. There’s a collection of 18th century farm machinery in addition to that in use.
A bailiff’s garden and cottage were stars in the TV series.
In the grounds is a Scheduled Ancient Monument, the site of a Roman villa located within an iron age enclosure. It can be view on one of the waymarked walks found in the grounds.
Another walk takes in the specific locations for the TV show. Holidays are on offer on the farm with a variety of accommodation types. A café is located in the former 18th century schoolhouse. A village hall and St Margaret’s church with its 12th century tower are located nearby.
Acton Scott Historic Working Farm
Wenlock Lodge, Acton Scott
Signed from A49 near Church Stretton
Tel. 0 1694 781 307
Open: April-end Oct, Tue-Sun, 10am-4.30pm during school times, 10.30am-5pm during school holidays
Picnic area; parking; shop; holiday self-catering houses; bed and breakfast; camping
Web: Acton Scott Historic Working Farm