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Group Tours & Talks

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With its fascinating history and the constantly evolving restoration project, the Walled Garden is a wonderful site for clubs and societies to visit. Our experienced speakers and guides can deliver a wide range of illustrated talks relating to the history of the garden and Estate, either in the comfort of our new education room, or in a venue of your choice.

For the 2018 season the Walled Garden will be holding Open Days every Wednesday 10.30am-4pm, between 2nd May and 26th September. Clubs and societies may wish to pre-book a dedicated tour on these days, giving you a private tour guide and more personalised experience. Any visitors planning to arrive by coach must inform us prior to your visit.

Guided Walled Garden Tour

Your group can enjoy a dedicated tour of the garden; taking in the Garden glasshouses, back sheds and the Dairy. Learn about the history of the garden. Discover how the garden was organised, the way the gardeners worked, the plants that were grown and see the work now being done by our fantastic Volunteers.

History of the Walled Garden Talk, Tour & Tea

Enjoy light refreshments and an illustrated talk on the history of the Luton Hoo Walled Garden. Learn how the garden has changed over nearly 300 years and the story of the staff that worked in it. Follow this with a guided tour taking in the glasshouses, back sheds and the Dairy. See the plants that are now being grown, and the conservation work being completed by our Volunteers!

Guided Tour of the Victorian Farm Buildings

This tour will take your group through the Victorian farm yard, past the Stewards House, granary and Estate yard to the stables, where there will be a small exhibition. Learn about the history of the farm, its owners and its modern use as a film location.

History of the Luton Hoo Estate Farms; Tour, Talk & Tea

Enjoy light refreshements and an illustrated talk on the history of the Luton Hoo Estate Farms, followed by a guided tour of the Vicorian farm buildings (as detailed above).

Capability Brown’s Walled Garden: Talk, Tour and Tea

2016 was the Tercentenary of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown. Learn about Brown’s time at Luton Hoo; what was planned and achieved before a tour specifically targeted on the end of the eighteenth century.

Capability Brown’s Luton Hoo Walled Garden: Study Day

A study day based on Capability Brown's time at Luton Hoo may be arranged if required.  



Clubs and societies can also book one of our speakers to give a range of illustrated talks on aspects of the history of the Luton Hoo Estate in the comfort of a venue of your choice.

We offer 7 talks (subject to the availability of speakers):

Capability Brown’s Walled Garden

Continuing in 2018, a talk about Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.  The collaboration between John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute and Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown resulted in a Walled Garden for Bute’s Botanical Collection.  Details about the overall landscape; his original plan for the Walled Garden, what was actually built, still remains plus details of his plants, gardeners, supplying water to the garden etc.  

Hoo's Farms

Brand new! The story of the farms and farmers of the Luton Hoo Estate. Pursleys was the home farm in the 18th century; the farm buildings from the outstanding show case Victorian farm still remain. A wide circle of tenant farms surrounded the Estate; some tenatns relocated their whole farm from Scotland by train!

Hoo's Who, WW1 

Brand new! Who were the 99 men on the Luton Hoo Estate Roll of Honour? This new talk provides a glimpse into the Luton Hoo Estate during WW1 and includes the detective story to discover the people behind the list of names.

The History of the Luton Hoo Walled Garden from the 17th to the 21st Century 

This talk looks at how successive owners transformed the garden over a period of nearly three hundred years. It is also the story of the staff who worked there and the magnificent structures that survive from the Victorian age. Our speaker will explain how a very active volunteer team is bringing the garden back to life.

Hoo's Who, 100 Years Ago 

A glimpse of some of the people working and living on the Luton Hoo Estate 100 years ago. Featuring mainly the gardeners plus a few of the other estate workers - a combination of 'Downton Abbey' and 'Who Do You Think You Are'!

Hoo's Who, around 150 Years Ago 

Following the success of the talk Hoo's Who, 100 years Ago we now offer a talk featuring those who were living and working on the Estate approximately 150 years ago.

John Stuart 3rd Earl of Bute, a scholar and a gentleman or a corrupt scoundrel

A talk about John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute who built the Walled Garden for his botanical collection in the 1760s. 2013 marked the 300th birthday of Bute and this talk promotes the little known influence of this fascinating man who helped the Dowager Princess of Wales establish the Botanical Gardens at Kew.

Luton Hoo's Allotments 

For those interested in allotments or not! A talk about the history of the 9 sets of allotments located on the Luton Hoo Estate. Some of these allotment sites were for estate workers, others were provided for the people of Luton. Where are they now? - Under the airport!