As the excitement builds around the release of 'Miss Potter' the film about the life of Beatrix Potter starring Renee Zellweger, The National Trust is working hard within our conservation limits, to open Hill Top more than usual this year.

Hill Top has been open to the public since 1946 and thousands of people come from all over the world every year to visit this special house. The little farm at Sawrey was the first place that Beatrix bought in the Lake District and was the inspiration for several of her books and artwork. Come along and see her treasured collection here, many of which feature in the books. See the settings for Samuel Whiskers or Tom Kitten, and later on this year sees more access to Mr McGregor's garden - see if you can see Jemima's egg !.

With so many visitors, essential conservation work takes place every winter to keep the house in good condition forever, for everyone. However, given the increased interest in Beatrix and her life as a result of the film, we have worked hard to get this work completed sooner so that we can open the house earlier.

Hill Top Shop and Garden will be open free of charge every day from Monday 8th January to Sunday 25th February, from 10.30 to 16.00 and then from Saturday 3rd March from 10.30 to 17.00 until 4th November.  The garden is inevitably not looking at its best, but in many ways the wintry views of Beatrix’s house, in its charming setting are as inspiring as in the height of summer.

Hill Top House will reopen early - on Saturday 3rd March for weekends only as we complete the conservation work and then from Saturday 31st March from Saturday to Wednesday. There are also a number of extra open days during the summer holidays.

For more information about Hill Top, please check The National Trust website at http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk or call our Hill Top office on 015394 36269.
Click here to view all the opening times for 2007.


ON SUNDAY 17 December, The Royalty Cinema in Bowness-on-Windemere was the official host of the Lake District Premiere of the new film, MISS POTTER, inspired by the life of Beatrix Potter, starring Renée Zellweger as Beatrix and Ewan McGregor as her publisher, Norman Warne.

Key actors from the film were in attendance - Lloyd Owen who plays Lake District solicitor, William Heelis and Barbara Flynn who plays Beatrix’s mother, Helen.  Local celebrities from the Northwest were also on the red carpet.

Through her books and philanthropy, Beatrix Potter is synonymous with The Lake District.  As a child, Beatrix and her family holidayed in the region and after leaving London she bought Hill Top Farm, Near Sawrey with Heelis.  An enthusiastic conservationist, she invested heavily in land and at her death in 1943, she left 4,000 acres to the National Trust including Hill Top.

The Lake District is the heart and soul of the film and the production spent a number of weeks in early 2006 shooting the film around the region.  While there, the beauty and magic of the area inspired the cast and crew.

“You really can sense the peace she found there, that she craved,” says Renée Zellweger.

“The access to all the things she liked most, the things that inspired her, the colours she used in her paintings, the quiet that allows you to sit and take it in.  This would feed the woman’s work.  You can feel it.”

The premiere was presented in association with The Northwest Regional Development Agency, Momentum Pictures and Penguin Publishing.
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