Dickensian Garden Party & Mad Hatter's Tea Party

Join the genteel Victorian Household (and their staff) for afternoon tea, garden games and croquet. For younger visitors there will be a representation of the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party based upon Mr Lewis Carroll’s recently published novel Alice in Wonderland.

Our Dickensian Garden Party & Fete

We combine a Garden Party with a little fund raising - just as happened in Victorian times. Enjoy a quiet Garden Party with Games on the Lawn to raise money for the newly opened Great Ormonde St Children’s Hospital - so dear to the heart of Mr Charles Dickens who will be attending and giving a reading.

The Mad Hatter's Tea Party

For younger visitors (at extra cost of £5) there will be a representation of the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party based upon Mr Lewis Carroll’s recently published (and very popular) novel Alice in Wonderland.

Visiting children are invited to come dressed up as a favourite character from Alice and join the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party with colourful treats, drink me potions and all things Alice in Wonderland. Why not join us and celebrate your un-birthday!

History of a Victorian Garden Party

Victorians enjoyed afternoon tea parties which they termed Garden Parties. A tradition that the Queen maintains with the summer Garden Parties at Buckingham Palace. A Garden Party enabled ladies to show off their latest fashions. Also for young ladies and gentlemen to become better acquainted with each other.

Also young and old indulged in a little light exercise such as archery, rowing or punting (on the Moat at Kentwell), croquet and a game in which players with racquets batted a ball back and forth across a net which only a few years later would acquire court dimensions and rules and become formalised as lawn tennis.


Our Mr Dickens will also give regular readings of favourite Dickens passages.


The food and drink which was served at Garden Parties had not yet become formalised (as it soon was to be) as tea, cake and cucumber sandwiches. Visitors will be able to sample what the Victorians did enjoy which is rather more interesting.


Our Dickensian Garden Party will take place in the afternoons of the Saturday and the Sunday. In the mornings we shall be preparing Victorian style for the afternoon's activities.

Ticket Prices

TicketPriceOnline Price - must be booked at least 24 hours before you visit
Adult Ticket - House, Garden Party & Farm entry£10.80£9.75
OAP Ticket - House, Garden Party & Farm entry£9.60£8.65
Child Ticket - House, Garden Party & Farm entry£7.20£6.45
Open on: 
Sat 3 August - Sun 4 August
Open times: 
11am - 5pm (House open from noon)
Number of Re-Creation Folk: 
20+ Victorians
Amount of House open: 
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All images and text © Kentwell Hall, Long Melford, Suffolk CO10 9BA