4 Must Visit National Trust Properties in Staffordshire
The National Trust is a national treasure. Founded in 1895, this veteran charity is responsible for nearly 600 historic sites across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Its portfolio includes gardens, castles, churches and even a 1,100-acre island – and every single one is worth a visit. If you want to enjoy the great outdoors or spend a rainy day exploring a stately home, just look for that leafy logo. You'll know you're in for a treat.
Are you planning to visit our corner of the Midlands? Good news. There are more than a dozen National Trust properties in Staffordshire and Shropshire, ranging from Roman ruins to Rock Houses.
Here are four of the finest, in no particular order.
Prices and details are correct at the time of writing. Check the National Trust website for up-to-date information about National Trust properties in Staffordshire and the wider UK.
Moseley Old Hall
Who needs Netflix when you've got historical drama like this? Moseley Old Hall might look like a typical Elizabethan farmhouse, but if you scratch beneath its wattled walls you'll discover a saga of war, royalty, and political subterfuge.
The story goes like this. In 1651, King Charles II suffered a crushing defeat at the Battle of Worcester. Hounded by Oliver Cromwell's troops, he sought refuge at Moseley – arriving, according to some accounts, in wet workman's clothes and ill-fitting shoes.
Visitors today can see the four-poster bed in which Charles slept, as well as the tiny 'priest-hole' where the King ensconced himself during a Parliamentarian raid.
It's not all ruffs and skirmishes, though. Like most National Trust properties in Staffordshire, Moseley Old Hall has its fair share of family-friendly facilities, including a pretty knot garden, a tea room, and a second-hand bookshop.
Location: Moseley Old Hall Lane, Fordhouses, Wolverhampton, WV10 7HY.
Price: £10 for adults, £5 for children. Free for members and under-fives.
Parking: On-site car park.
Are dogs allowed? Dogs on leads are allowed in the grounds and gardens. Only assistance dogs are allowed inside the property.
Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses
You haven't heard of Kinver Edge and the Rock Houses? They could have been the next Beatles…
We jest. Kinver Edge isn't a rock band. But if you're looking for an unusual day out, this prodigious promontory will climb straight to the top of your personal hit parade.
There's plenty to do at Kinver. You can visit an Iron Age hillfort. You can discover miles of local woodland. If you visit at the right time, you can even catch some kid-friendly outdoor theatre.
But it's those aforementioned Rock Houses that take centre stage. They're just what they sound like – a series of cave dwellings carved into Kinver's craggy sandstone peaks. Incredibly, some of them were inhabited as recently as the 1960s.
You'll find these unique National Trust properties in Staffordshire's southernmost region, close to the Worcestershire border.
Location: Compton Road, Kinver, near Stourbridge, DY7 6DL.
Price: £7 for adults, £3.50 for children. Free for members and under-fives.
Parking: There is a lay-by nearby with free parking.
Are dogs allowed? Yes, in the garden and meadow (with leads). No dogs are allowed in the tea room or inside the Rock Houses.
Letocetum Roman Baths and Museum
Are you exploring on a budget? Make sure to add Letocetum Roman Baths to your 'must-see' list. Unlike most National Trust properties in Staffordshire, this archaeological site is completely free to visit.
Letocetum was once a staging post on Watling Street, an important and lengthy Roman road. Weary soldiers could rest at Letocetum for the night before heading west to Wales in the morning.
Nowadays, of course, it's all rubble and ruins. But if you use your imagination, you can picture the bustling ancient inn and steaming baths, complete with separate hot, warm and cold rooms. There's a museum on site, too, in case you want to dig a little deeper.
A quick word of warning. While the ruins are open during 'reasonable daylight hours', the museum only operates on selected days of the year. Check the English Heritage website for details.
Location: Watling Street, Wall, near Lichfield, WS14 0AW.
Parking: Free parking is available nearby.
Are dogs allowed? Yes, on leads.
We can't talk about National Trust properties in Staffordshire without mentioning Shugborough. The National Trust website describes this extravagant estate as 'a Staffordshire paradise' – and we're inclined to agree.
The phrase, 'something for everyone' springs to mind. Shugborough hosts, among other things, a working farm, a woodland play area, two cafes and Europe's widest yew tree. There are several shops too, including a second-hand bookshop and a pint-sized garden centre.
And, of course, there's the estate itself – a magnificent Georgian mansion set within 900 acres of ancient forests, sweeping parkland and sculptured gardens.
You could spend a good half-day discovering the secrets within Shugborough Hall – and the other half poking around quirky follies, snacking in the tea room and relaxing in the leafy arboretum.
The downside? Admission is a little steep. But if you can afford it, Shugborough promises a fun-filled family day out. It easily ranks as one of the best National Trust properties in Staffordshire.
Location: Milford, near Stafford, ST17 0UP.
Price: £14 for adults, £7 for children.
Parking: On-site car park.
Are dogs allowed? Yes, on leads.
Fancy visiting these National Trust properties in Staffordshire?
You'll need a few days to experience them all. So why not make a holiday of it?
Treat yourself to a long weekend at The Moat House and you'll have all the time in the world to explore our stunning surroundings.
While you're here, you'll enjoy 4-star service, award-winning food and easy access to all of these National Trust properties in Staffordshire. (Not to mention canalside walks, gorgeous gardens and two famous family theme parks.)
After a day of adventure, you can rest in one of our stylish, comfortable suites. (And dream about all the fun you'll have tomorrow…)