Downton Abbey-inspired breaks: Six top British stately home hotels

Downton Abbeyreturns to our screens on Sunday 20 September for the sixth and final series of the ITV hit drama, and as Downton fever sweeps across the country, we thought we'd take a look at some of the finest stately homes-cum-hotels around Britain where you can spend the night.

Perfect to help you live like your favourite characters, these grand manor houses offer everything you need for a Downton Abbey-esque break in the UK: the gorgeous countryside locations, impressive fireplaces and four-poster beds.

See also: TV locations in stately homes: how many can you recognise?

Hop back in time and live like Lord and Lady Grantham for the weekend at these impressive holiday rentals and hotels...

Mears Ashby Hall, Northamptonshire

Visiting this secret house is like stepping back in time. Four poster beds, grand mirrors, traditional paintings and luxurious grounds give Mears Ashby Hall (pictured above) a sense of elegance. The spacious drawing rooms, spectacular dining areas and library corners make staying here an unforgettable experience. The house sleeps 20 people and is available from £4,750 for two nights from The Big Domain.

Court House Manor, Cotswolds

Located in pretty Painswick, Court House Manor is a gorgeous Grade I listed home. Recently refurbished, it has been restored to an exceptional standard, sympathetic to the past. Steeped in history, previous guests include King Charles I during the 1643 Siege of Gloucester, who is said to still haunt the four acres of landscaped gardens. The house sleeps up to 24 people in 14 bedrooms and stays start at £1,215 per night from

See also: Where is Poldark filmed? Searches for Cornwall soar

Melville Castle, near Edinburgh

Standing within 50 acres of beautiful woodland, Melville Castle is an 18th-century country house hotel just 20 minutes from Edinburgh. With gorgeous views of the surrounding landscape and luxurious rooms, even Lady Violet wouldn't have much to complain about in this historic castle. Guests can throw themselves into the Grantham lifestyle, engaging in countryside activities such as clay pigeon shooting and falconry. Stays at the hotel cost from £99 per room per night from Secret Escapes.

Sibton Park, Suffolk

This grand Georgian country estate is available fully-serviced with a chef, butler and waiting staff. Grab your wax jackets to explore Sibton Park's grounds, where you can partake in a spot of traditional clay pigeon shooting or enjoy a leisurely stroll. The Earl of Grantham would be impressed with this high-class retreat as the men can retire to the Gentleman's Library after dinner for a game of cards. The 13-bedroom estate sleeps 24 people for £2,500 per night from The Big Domain.

Walton Hall, Stratford-upon-Avon

Constructed as the ancestral home of the Mordaunt family, the 16th-century Walton Hall served for centuries as a high society residence before being transformed into a luxury hotel with 65 acres of parkland. It boasts the two time AA rosette awarded Moncreiffe Restaurant and a spa with fitness suite, aerobics studio, indoor swimming pool, sauna and steam room. Walton Hall is the perfect spot for countryside walks and provides an excellent base for exploring nearby Stratford-upon-Avon and Warwick. Stays at the hotel start at £114 per room per night from Secret Escapes.

Brinsop Manor house, Peak District

The moment that you push open the ancient oak door of Brinsop Manor House, you will find yourself face to face with a piece of great English heritage complete with stone window ledges, leadlight windows and oak beams. This medieval manor house, which counts William Wordsworth among its ex-residents, offers the ultimate break for a large group, with its Games Room, enormous luxurious beds and well-stocked farmhouse kitchens. The house sleeps 26 people in 14 bedrooms and costs £1,040 per night with


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