Ormesby Hall National Trust Review

Ormesby Hall is located in the picturesque village of Ormesby just outside the bustling city of Middlesbrough in northeast England, is a charming destination our family always enjoys visiting. The perfect balance of history and nature, Ormesby Hall offers us a unique escape, and it has become a favourite for creating cherished family memories.

As you enter the estate, you’ll be greeted by the stunning Georgian mansion, which was built in the 18th century and has been beautifully preserved. The architecture alone is enough to take your breath away, but that’s just the beginning of what Ormesby Hall has to offer. The estate has a remarkable collection of art and antiques that are displayed throughout the mansion, adding to its charm and appeal.

As someone with a keen interest in history and nature, I find Ormesby Hall a constant attraction for me and my family. It is a place where rich history, fascinating stories, and diverse activities coexist, making every visit meaningful. Barney and Matilda’s eyes light up with excitement every time we arrive and step into the lush green surroundings, knowing that delightful experiences await them.

Join me as I guide you through this delightful estate, where an adventure is always just around the corner for you and your family.

History of Ormesby Hall

Ormesby Hall, with its stunning Georgian architecture, proudly boasts a rich history that spans several centuries. Every time I step through its doors, I’m transported back in time, eager to uncover the tales that lie within its walls. This Grade I listed building served as the ancestral home of the Pennyman family for approximately 400 years. The Pennyman family, prominent local landowners and benefactors, have left an indelible mark on the hall and its surrounding landscape.

As I wander through the corridors and rooms of this classic Georgian mansion, I’m drawn deeper into the lives of the people who once called it home. One figure that stands out is Colonel Jim Pennyman, a pivotal figure in early 20th-century social reform movements. It’s fascinating to gain a unique insight into his life and the impact he had on the local community. The stories and historical artefacts I encounter along the way truly bring history to life.

What is There to Do at Ormesby Hall?

Ormesby Hall offers a wide range of activities that cater to all ages, ensuring an unforgettable experience for the entire family. Each visit brings with it a sense of excitement and anticipation as we discover new adventures and create lasting memories. Let’s explore some of the highlights that await you:

Exciting natural play area:

As a parent, there’s nothing more rewarding than seeing my children’s imaginations run wild. Ormesby Hall provides the perfect space for their creativity to flourish in the exciting natural play area. From the mini wooden fort to the rope swing and logs to scramble over, it’s a world of adventure waiting to be explored. I love watching their faces light up with joy as they engage in imaginative play and burn off some energy.

Family-friendly trails:

Ormesby Hall transforms a simple walk into an exciting adventure with its family-friendly trails. These trails are designed to engage young minds and offer a fun way to discover the hidden wonders of the estate. We’ve followed treasure maps, solved riddles, and identified wildlife, all while enjoying the beautiful surroundings. It’s a fantastic way to make learning interactive and memorable for the whole family.

Engaging exhibitions and activities inside the hall:

Stepping inside the magnificent hall feels like stepping into a different era. We’re greeted by family-friendly exhibitions and activities that never fail to captivate us. From craft sessions where we can try our hand at traditional crafts to the opportunity to dress up in period costumes, there’s always something new to explore. It’s a chance for us to connect with history in a hands-on way and create our own masterpieces.

The fascinating Model Railway room:

One of the highlights of Ormesby Hall is undoubtedly the fascinating model railway room. Even as an adult, I find myself captivated by the intricate design and lifelike features of the miniature trains. Every corner holds a delightful surprise, and I’m always left in awe. Whether you’re a train enthusiast or not, this charming display will undoubtedly draw you in and leave you with a sense of wonder.

Walking trails:

Fountains Abbey is a paradise for walkers. The area is surrounded by breathtaking countryside and plenty of trails to explore. You can choose from leisurely strolls to more challenging hikes depending on your preference.

Explore the Beautiful Gardens:

The gardens at Ormesby Hall are a paradise waiting to be explored. It’s a place where we can escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and immerse ourselves in nature’s tranquillity. We stroll through the winding pathways, taking in the vibrant flowers and manicured hedges. It’s a sensory delight as we discover hidden nooks, ancient trees, and fragrant blooms. The gardens provide the perfect backdrop for a leisurely family picnic or a peaceful moment of reflection.


Ormesby Hall understands the needs of families and ensures that our visit is comfortable and convenient. The excellent facilities include well-maintained toilets and baby-changing stations, catering to the needs of our little ones. The majority of the venue is accessible for pushchairs and wheelchairs, allowing everyone to explore and enjoy their surroundings with ease.

Would you recommend it?

As a family, we wholeheartedly recommend Ormesby Hall as a fantastic day out. It’s a place where everyone, regardless of age, can find something they love. Our kids have a blast in the natural play area, exploring the trails, and being amazed by the model railway room. And for us adults, there’s the fascinating history and peaceful beauty of the hall and gardens. Ormesby Hall is a special place where we can step back in time and enjoy the beauty of nature all at once. It’s an experience we wouldn’t want to miss, and we’re eager to return time and time again.

In summary, Ormesby Hall offers families a truly delightful escape into history and nature. From the captivating Georgian mansion to the enchanting gardens and engaging activities, every aspect of this destination is designed to cater to the interests of all ages. It’s a place where we can immerse ourselves in the rich history, embark on thrilling adventures, and revel in the tranquillity of the natural surroundings. 

Ormesby Hall provides a unique opportunity to step back in time, make cherished memories, and create a connection with the beauty of the past and the wonders of nature. Plan your visit to Ormesby Hall and embark on an unforgettable journey that will leave your family eager to return time and time again.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a cafe?:

Yes, Ormesby Hall offers a delightful tea room where you can relax and unwind. The tea room serves a range of hot and cold beverages, including freshly brewed tea and coffee. Indulge in delicious homemade cakes, sandwiches, and other treats, providing the perfect refreshment after a day of exploration. Take a moment to savour the flavours and recharge before continuing your adventure.

What is your favourite part?:

It’s hard to choose just one favourite part of Ormesby Hall because each aspect offers its own unique charm. However, the model railway room is truly captivating. Whether you’re a train enthusiast or not, the intricate design and realistic features of the model trains will leave you in awe. It’s a testament to the attention to detail and dedication put into creating a memorable experience for visitors. Additionally, the gardens hold a special place in our hearts, offering a serene space for relaxation and exploration.

Is it suitable for Dog walkers?

Absolutely! Ormesby Hall welcomes well-behaved dogs on leads in the gardens and grounds. It’s the perfect opportunity to enjoy a leisurely walk surrounded by beautiful scenery while your furry friend can appreciate the delights of nature. Please note that dogs (except for assistance dogs) are not allowed in the mansion or play areas.

How much is it?

For the most up-to-date ticket prices, we recommend visiting the official website of the National Trust, which manages Ormesby Hall. National Trust members can often enjoy free entry, while non-members are required to purchase an entrance ticket. It’s advisable to check the current prices and any special offers before planning your visit.

Are there any special events or activities throughout the year?

Yes, Ormesby Hall hosts a variety of seasonal events and activities throughout the year, ensuring that each visit offers something new and exciting. From Easter egg hunts in the spring to spooky Halloween trails in the fall and festive Christmas events in the winter, there’s always something to look forward to. These events add an extra touch of magic and create unforgettable memories for families visiting Ormesby Hall.

How long does a typical visit to Ormesby Hall last?

The duration of a visit to Ormesby Hall can vary depending on your interests and the activities you choose to engage in. A leisurely visit can span anywhere from a couple of hours to a full day of discovery. With the range of attractions and the opportunity to explore the hall, gardens, play areas, and exhibitions, you can easily spend an entire day immersed in the wonders of Ormesby Hall. Take your time to absorb the beauty, engage with the history, wander through the gardens, and make lasting memories with your family.

Pros & Cons


  • Visually stunning hall
  • Lovely views and varying walks
  • Model railway room
  • Great play park.


  • Expensive for non-members

National Trust enjoyment rating

Last Updated on May 22, 2023 by Ryan

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