Just three miles from Brum’s fulcrum, the Edwardian splendour of Winterbourne House and gardens offers frazzled city dwellers a historic escape. Set within seven acres of botanical gardens, which include a woodland walk, over 6,000 species of plants and a Japanese bridge, the house is a treasure chest of trinkets and antiques. Leave time to take in the story of its former occupants, the Nettlefold family, by journeying through the drawing room and nursery as well as the newly opened scullery next to the old kitchen.
Under the stewardship of the nearby University of Birmingham, Winterbourne doubles up as a venue for workshops and short courses throughout the year. Take advantage of experiences as varied as beekeeping, calligraphy and vegetable growing.
Also be sure to save room for a generous slice of cake. Winterbourne has a tearoom with a substantial sun terrace that serves refreshments and sweet treats throughout the day, as well as seasonal mains from noon until 3pm.
Note that opening hours vary from season to season, with last entry as early as 3.30pm in the winter, so check the website when planning your visit.