The Romantic Embrace of Scotney Castle

April 19, 2017 Lifestyle

I wouldn’t say that I’m your traditional twenty-something student, I’ve never found night clubs entertaining, can think of nothing worse than drinking myself paralytic on a weekly basis and just don’t seem to fit the party animal stereotype that so often describes my generation. Instead, of an evening, you’ll find me baking with a glass of red in hand or enjoying an early night snuggled in a bed full of pillows. For days out I’m bowled over by beautiful gardens, tearooms and architecture, a sucker for a piece of history it probably comes as no surprise that I often find myself drawn to the beautiful properties now owned by the National Trust or English Heritage, spending hours wrapped up in their romantic embrace.

One of my most frequented National Trust sites is that of Scotney Castle, just a short drive up the A21 from my childhood home. The beautiful ‘old’ Scotney castle lies in semi-ruin amongst the well-established gardens of the grand ‘New’ Scotney House.

The House at Scotney

On entering you first find yourself in the shadow of the 19th Century country house, built in the Tudor Revival Style and designed by the architect Anthony Salvin. The house, until recently, was still lived in by Elizabeth Hussey who upon her death in 2006 left the property to the National Trust. The house was first opened to the public in 2007 with the trust keeping many of the more modern features exactly as Elizabeth Hussey had left them. A lover of cats, the house still has a few feline visitors and a cat bed can still be seen, forever preserved, in the Hussey Kitchen. Amongst the more modern items in the house are many generations worth of possessions and the self-guided tour takes you on a walk back and forwards in time from room to room.


Stepping back out into the sunlight, we next headed for one of my favourite parts of the grounds, the Quarry Garden. The garden takes its name from the fact that it is, in fact, the quarry from which the sandstone used to build the house was appropriated. The steeply sided basin was then landscaped and filled with a most magical selection of trees and shrubs, which whether in bloom or not, offer a spectacular array of colours and textures. With a backlash setting in and a move away from the grassy vistas of Capability Brown the gardens at Scotney feel a lot more haphazard, naturally rendered and follow elegant free flowing lines. The flowers come alive in the breeze as bumble bees feverishly collect their nectar, in turn covering themselves in their dusty pollen.

Looking down on the Quarry Garden


Descending into the Quarry Garden


The Quarry Garden, teaming with life.

As you exit the Quarry Garden a short walk downhill leads you to Scotney Castle itself, lying elegantly in the centre of a gently flowing moat. Shockingly this 14th-century castle was deliberately ruined to create a romantic folly for the gardens of the house and although originally it is believed to have had four turrets, today only one remains. It’s scarred remains currently lie under a tapestry of scaffolding, with essential maintenance necessary to preserve the last pieces of its history.


A view over the moat

There really is something for everyone here at Scotney. The grass banks surrounding the moat provide a perfect place to stop for a picnic, look for fish, feed the friendly ducks and geese or take in the spectacular views of the castle. There are acres of space for children to run and play and a specific play area named after the beloved dogs of Arthur Hussey, Badger and Pepper. For the keen walker, explorer and our four-legged friends, there are 780 acres of parkland to roam, still grazed and maintained by Sussex cattle and sheep as it has been for centuries. Even having been several times there is always something new left to see, a secret part of the garden to explore or a different tree to have a picnic beneath.

Have you ever been to Scotney Castle?

Love, Sophia x


  1. Steph says:

    This castle looks beautiful. It looks like you went out there on a good day as well. I mean, look at that weather!

    I’m with you on defying the stereotypes of our generation! From experience and not just arrogance, I can say that I hate clubbing and alcohol does something funny- something not normal and not fun- to my body. I can’t stand the stuff.


  2. Antonia says:

    This place looks so pretty. I love old buildings and beautiful nature around it. xo

    Antonia || Sweet Passions

  3. Ashleigh says:

    This is a lovely post, it’s looks beautiful! The pictures look so lovely.

    I also agree with you on the alcohol thing. I’m the type of person that prefers to drink in the comfort of my own home or something similar with a group of friends rather than going out to nightclubs every weekend – it’s just not fun for me!

    Ashleigh |

  4. This sounds absolutely beautiful! Your pictures are stunning! I love things like this for days out, it’s so beautiful to explore these places.

    Jordanne ||

  5. Amina says:

    Wow it looks so beautiful. Cant believe i have never heard of it. I love exploring Britains history so this will definitely be on my lost of places to visit.

    Amina xx

  6. Ayana says:

    This is a lovely place! I’m with you about the stereotypes, I’m in my late twenties but never really been into party.

  7. Samantha says:

    This castle looks so beautiful and the gardens are so pretty! I love finding new places to go and visit and I’ll definitely be putting this on my list!

    Samantha |

  8. Kirsty says:

    That looks gorgeous! I love any historical haunts and spending a whole day exploring, even better if there is a tearoom too! Beautiful pictures as well! Xx

  9. Lea says:

    I used to hate it when my parents, especially my mom would drag us on a day out to see a castle, house, garden etc. and now that I’m in my twenties I find myself suggesting going there too. There are so many nice sights to be seen and this place looks just lie one of these.
    Lea, xx

  10. I have never been here but I would love to visit. I loved your pictures, very beautiful!

  11. Marisa says:

    What an amazing place to have near home! I wish I were so lucky! You’ve given it a lovely introduction 🙂

  12. laura says:

    This place is very beautiful. I love the lake and flowers

  13. Danielle says:

    I too have never been someone who loved to go out and party. Even after I turned the legal drinking age, I didn’t feel the urge to go out and get completely trashed. I was different than most around me. I love going exploring more! This is a beautiful castle♥ My goal in life is to travel and see beautiful places such as this castle!

    -Danielle Ruppert //

  14. Helene says:

    This castle and its grounds look so beautiful! I’ve never heard of Scotney Castle, but I wish I had known about it when I was living in London!

    xo, Helene

  15. Victoria says:

    I love going around National Trust and English heritage properties and gardens! So much so, I’m now a NT member! This place looks absolutely beautiful and your photos are stunning! I’m definitely going to have to visit Scotney! Thank you for sharing! X

    Victoria | VictoriaaHelenn

    • Sophia says:

      Thank you Victoria! I love the NT too, I’ve had a student membership the last few years, but will be renewing it to a full adult one come graduation 😀 xx

  16. Alicia S says:

    This looks like the perfect location for an outfit shoot!
    Alicia x

  17. This looks absolutely AMAZING!! How gorgeous are your photos. I loveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee castles and have such an interest in the story behind them. What a gorgeous day you had. Love this post!!

  18. Tara says:

    This is SO beautiful and makes me want to visit ASAP! definitely on my list to do!

  19. Sharon Wu says:

    omg this castle looks so dreamy! i want to be there now haha

    xo, sharon

  20. Ash says:

    I guess we are all alike in the sense that we don’t party and drink but instead lie in bed and blog or bake etc.
    I love castles too and this one is a beautiful one. I love the view over the moat.
    Ash |

  21. Kim Galeta says:

    Absolutely gorge! I’d love to travel there. Thanks for sharing!

  22. Frida says:

    Wow, so beautiful!!

  23. I’ve not been to a castle since I was a child but have always wanted to stay in a former castle hotel!
    Looks like great fun.

  24. Tereza says:

    This place looks beautiful – a proper fairy tale one! I love visiting British castles – especially those that have gorgeous gardens around them! x

  25. Sarah says:

    This is beautiful. I have never heard of it so thank you for such a detailed, well written post. Stunning photos too. This could be a guide book.

  26. Emma says:

    I’ver never been to Scotney Castle, but it looks absolutely beautiful. xx

    Emma /

  27. Ivanna says:

    This looks great. I love seeing different types of castles. I haven’t been here but it seems like a cool place to visit. I hope to make it to the UK one day though.

  28. Jenn Worrell says:

    Wow! I’ve never visited Europe, and posts like yours make me want to “cross the pond” even more! What a place!

  29. Relyn says:

    This place looks so magical! Hopefully I can visit one day. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  30. These photos are unreal. I’ve always wanted to travel to Europe to see the beauty of landmarks like these myself!!

  31. blossawe says:

    Woah..that looks gorgeous, awesome pics! It reminds me of all the classics 🙂

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As said by Sophia

I'm Sophia Whitham, a Classics graduate from Kings College London embarking on a journey into marketing with Kafoodle. A keen writer, foodie and traveller I have combined my interests into this little corner of the internet 🥂

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