Down House

Down House With its unique place in the history of science and evolution, Down House, the family home of world-renowned scientist Charles Darwin, is a must-see.

Charles Darwin's Home

HOUSE RULES

This page is designed as a place to discuss Down House - to share tips for a great day out at the house, upcoming events and news from the property. We love hearing the ideas and opinions of our social community, and encourage you to leave comments, photos, videos and links (‘content’) here on our page. However, in the interests of our whole community, by using

Charles Darwin's Home

HOUSE RULES

This page is designed as a place to discuss Down House - to share tips for a great day out at the house, upcoming events and news from the property. We love hearing the ideas and opinions of our social community, and encourage you to leave comments, photos, videos and links (‘content’) here on our page. However, in the interests of our whole community, by using

Operating as usual

Congratulations to our garden team who have recently won several London in Bloom awards! Gold for Heritage Parks and Gar...
13/10/2021

Congratulations to our garden team who have recently won several London in Bloom awards! Gold for Heritage Parks and Gardens of the Year, Gold for Large Conservation Area of the Year, and Silver Gilt for Walled Garden of the Year! A huge thank you to all the staff and volunteers who worked so hard throughout the year and whose efforts have now paid off. Well done everyone! 👏🏅🎉

Congratulations to our garden team who have recently won several London in Bloom awards! Gold for Heritage Parks and Gardens of the Year, Gold for Large Conservation Area of the Year, and Silver Gilt for Walled Garden of the Year! A huge thank you to all the staff and volunteers who worked so hard throughout the year and whose efforts have now paid off. Well done everyone! 👏🏅🎉

Despite his busy schedule of research and writing Darwin still played an active role in the life of Downe village, becom...
10/10/2021

Despite his busy schedule of research and writing Darwin still played an active role in the life of Downe village, becoming a local magistrate, and founder and treasurer of the Downe Friendly Society which supported villagers in need. Emma also played a benevolent role, running a Sunday school and delivering food and medicines to sick families. Members of the Darwin family are buried in the local church, although as Darwin himself is buried in Westminster Abbey, a sun dial on the wall of the church commemorates his life here. It’s a short walk from Down House to the village, why not add it to your itinerary when you visit us next? http://bit.ly/Down-House

Despite his busy schedule of research and writing Darwin still played an active role in the life of Downe village, becoming a local magistrate, and founder and treasurer of the Downe Friendly Society which supported villagers in need. Emma also played a benevolent role, running a Sunday school and delivering food and medicines to sick families. Members of the Darwin family are buried in the local church, although as Darwin himself is buried in Westminster Abbey, a sun dial on the wall of the church commemorates his life here. It’s a short walk from Down House to the village, why not add it to your itinerary when you visit us next? http://bit.ly/Down-House

Next time you pay us a visit you'll see we have some new interactive information posts in our gardens explaining Darwin’...
06/10/2021

Next time you pay us a visit you'll see we have some new interactive information posts in our gardens explaining Darwin’s work. Perfect for visitors of any age! Why not come and try them out? http://bit.ly/Down-House

Next time you pay us a visit you'll see we have some new interactive information posts in our gardens explaining Darwin’s work. Perfect for visitors of any age! Why not come and try them out? http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1836 Darwin arrived back in England on board HMS Beagle after nearly 5 years travelling around the world. Th...
02/10/2021

On this day 1836 Darwin arrived back in England on board HMS Beagle after nearly 5 years travelling around the world. The specimens he’d collected and his observations from his travels were the basis for a five volume zoology of the voyage written by specialists he commissioned, his own “Journal of Researches” and three geology books, all of which helped to establish his reputation amongst the scientific community of the time. As he said himself, the long voyage “determined [his] whole career”. http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1836 Darwin arrived back in England on board HMS Beagle after nearly 5 years travelling around the world. The specimens he’d collected and his observations from his travels were the basis for a five volume zoology of the voyage written by specialists he commissioned, his own “Journal of Researches” and three geology books, all of which helped to establish his reputation amongst the scientific community of the time. As he said himself, the long voyage “determined [his] whole career”. http://bit.ly/Down-House

Darwin’s glasshouse was built in 1863. When it was finished he wrote to his good friend Joseph Ho**er at Kew Gardens ask...
29/09/2021

Darwin’s glasshouse was built in 1863. When it was finished he wrote to his good friend Joseph Ho**er at Kew Gardens asking him to send plants he could put in it. He wrote, “I long to stock it, just like a schoolboy”! It’s currently undergoing some renovation work so is closed to the public at the moment, but we can’t wait to welcome you back once it’s open again! Here are some of the orchids which have flowered recently - Phragmipedium Cape Sunset and Zygopetalum. http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1843, the Darwins’ daughter Henrietta, or Etty, was born. As a child she helped Darwin with his experiments ...
25/09/2021

On this day 1843, the Darwins’ daughter Henrietta, or Etty, was born. As a child she helped Darwin with his experiments - looking after his pigeons for example. Then in later life she proved a skilful editor and edited a number of his books, including “The Descent of Man”, and biographies of both her parents after their deaths. You can learn more about Etty’s life at Down House at http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1843, the Darwins’ daughter Henrietta, or Etty, was born. As a child she helped Darwin with his experiments - looking after his pigeons for example. Then in later life she proved a skilful editor and edited a number of his books, including “The Descent of Man”, and biographies of both her parents after their deaths. You can learn more about Etty’s life at Down House at http://bit.ly/Down-House

Darwin’s old laboratory has had a makeover! Built the year before he died he may never have had chance to use it, but st...
22/09/2021

Darwin’s old laboratory has had a makeover! Built the year before he died he may never have had chance to use it, but students at Downe House School for Girls, which occupied the site from 1907 certainly did and thought it “an honour to be working in Darwin’s own laboratory”. Pop in to see our new interactive displays and learn about Darwin’s research. When our bees return you’ll also be able to see inside our bee hive! See if you can spot the Queen Bee! http://bit.ly/Down-House

Darwin’s old laboratory has had a makeover! Built the year before he died he may never have had chance to use it, but students at Downe House School for Girls, which occupied the site from 1907 certainly did and thought it “an honour to be working in Darwin’s own laboratory”. Pop in to see our new interactive displays and learn about Darwin’s research. When our bees return you’ll also be able to see inside our bee hive! See if you can spot the Queen Bee! http://bit.ly/Down-House

All of Down House was a laboratory for Darwin, even the meadow where he grazed his animals. It was here that he monitore...
18/09/2021

All of Down House was a laboratory for Darwin, even the meadow where he grazed his animals. It was here that he monitored insects and the plants they visited, noting how Red Clover was dependent on bumblebees for pollination. Now known as Great House Meadow, we are trying to increase biodiversity there in order to support declining local insect populations. On your next visit why not take a walk through it and imagine what it was like in Darwin’s day! http://bit.ly/Down-House

All of Down House was a laboratory for Darwin, even the meadow where he grazed his animals. It was here that he monitored insects and the plants they visited, noting how Red Clover was dependent on bumblebees for pollination. Now known as Great House Meadow, we are trying to increase biodiversity there in order to support declining local insect populations. On your next visit why not take a walk through it and imagine what it was like in Darwin’s day! http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1842 the Darwins moved into Down House. Needing more space than their central London terraced house could pr...
14/09/2021

On this day 1842 the Darwins moved into Down House. Needing more space than their central London terraced house could provide, it was the perfect spot for their growing family. Another plus for Darwin was that he could escape from the busy social whirl of London, relocating to a house “at the extreme verge of the world”! Nowadays it’s not quite as remote as all that so we hope you can visit us soon! http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1842 the Darwins moved into Down House. Needing more space than their central London terraced house could provide, it was the perfect spot for their growing family. Another plus for Darwin was that he could escape from the busy social whirl of London, relocating to a house “at the extreme verge of the world”! Nowadays it’s not quite as remote as all that so we hope you can visit us soon! http://bit.ly/Down-House

11/09/2021

⚠ Due to unforeseen operational circumstances, our tea room will only be serving tea, coffee and a selection of delicious cakes today 🍰 We apologise for any inconvenience caused ⚠

Check out Jo Pearl's new film to celebrate Arts Council England's 'create day' https://createday.org/videos/jo-pearl/ Jo...
04/09/2021
Jo Pearl - Create Day

Check out Jo Pearl's new film to celebrate Arts Council England's 'create day' https://createday.org/videos/jo-pearl/ Join us at Down House to come and see her first solo show 'Moving Darwin' on display until Sunday 12th September 2021.

Ceramic sculptor, Jo Pearl, shares her process of modelling small emotional portraits and staining porcelain to create a palette of Wedgwood inspired coloured heads. She explains the inspiration for her solo show at the home of Charles Darwin, a personal taxonomy of emotions drawn from Darwin’s th...

Due to high visitor numbers, Down House is now fully booked for today (Monday 30th August) To avoid disappointment, we r...
30/08/2021
Home of Charles Darwin (Down House)

Due to high visitor numbers, Down House is now fully booked for today (Monday 30th August) To avoid disappointment, we recommend you pre-book your tickets via our website https://bit.ly/DownHousePrebook We look forward to seeing you soon!

Down House is a site of outstanding international significance. Here the famous scientist Charles Darwin lived with his family for forty years and worked on his revolutionary theories.

Due to high visitor numbers, Down House is now fully booked for today! To avoid disappointment, we recommend you pre-boo...
29/08/2021
Home of Charles Darwin (Down House)

Due to high visitor numbers, Down House is now fully booked for today! To avoid disappointment, we recommend you pre-book your tickets via our website https://bit.ly/DownHousePrebook We look forward to seeing you soon!

Down House is a site of outstanding international significance. Here the famous scientist Charles Darwin lived with his family for forty years and worked on his revolutionary theories.

There's still time left for summer exploring! Come and see the house and gardens where the Darwin children enjoyed a fre...
25/08/2021

There's still time left for summer exploring! Come and see the house and gardens where the Darwin children enjoyed a free and happy childhood, encouraged by their liberal minded parents! According to Darwin's daughter Henrietta, her father "cared for all our pursuits & interests" and her memories of her childhood home were "full of sunshine and happiness"! Visit us at http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1848 Darwin's seventh child, Francis was born. He followed in his father’s footsteps and became a botanist, ...
16/08/2021

On this day 1848 Darwin's seventh child, Francis was born. He followed in his father’s footsteps and became a botanist, working with Charles on a number of experiments and co-authoring the book, “The Power of Movement in Plants”.
He received a number of honorary doctorates and was knighted in 1913. Visit us to learn more about the Darwin family at http://bit.ly/Down-House

On this day 1848 Darwin's seventh child, Francis was born. He followed in his father’s footsteps and became a botanist, working with Charles on a number of experiments and co-authoring the book, “The Power of Movement in Plants”.
He received a number of honorary doctorates and was knighted in 1913. Visit us to learn more about the Darwin family at http://bit.ly/Down-House

"My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts.” - Charles ...
14/08/2021

"My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts.” - Charles Darwin.
Darwin did a lot of thinking on the Sandwalk where he walked regular circuits every day. See if you can find inspiration while following in his footsteps along his “thinking path”. Visit us at http://bit.ly/Down-House

"My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts.” - Charles Darwin.
Darwin did a lot of thinking on the Sandwalk where he walked regular circuits every day. See if you can find inspiration while following in his footsteps along his “thinking path”. Visit us at http://bit.ly/Down-House

Make the most of the sunshine and explore the home of Charles Darwin! His gardens were his outdoor laboratory. See which...
11/08/2021

Make the most of the sunshine and explore the home of Charles Darwin! His gardens were his outdoor laboratory. See which of his experiments you can spot! Visit us at http://bit.ly/Down-House

Did you know that when Darwin was a young man he developed an interest in shooting? His father despaired that he would b...
01/08/2021

Did you know that when Darwin was a young man he developed an interest in shooting? His father despaired that he would bring disgrace to the family because he cared “for nothing but shooting, dogs and rat-catching”!! His shooting skills came in handy though during his journey aboard the Beagle when he was able to help provide meat for the crew!
To learn more about Darwin’s life and interests, book our visit at http://bit.ly/Down-House

Did you know that when Darwin was a young man he developed an interest in shooting? His father despaired that he would bring disgrace to the family because he cared “for nothing but shooting, dogs and rat-catching”!! His shooting skills came in handy though during his journey aboard the Beagle when he was able to help provide meat for the crew!
To learn more about Darwin’s life and interests, book our visit at http://bit.ly/Down-House

⚠️ Please note that the House will be closed between Saturday 31 July and Friday 6 August due to operational reasons. If...
30/07/2021

⚠️ Please note that the House will be closed between Saturday 31 July and Friday 6 August due to operational reasons. If you have booked tickets for these dates, you will be refunded automatically within 10 working days, and you do not need to contact us to action your refund.

Advance booking is currently suspended for this period of time. The gardens, café and shop will remain open, at a reduced price. These tickets will only be available on the day from the site.

⚠️ Please note that the House will be closed between Saturday 31 July and Friday 6 August due to operational reasons. If you have booked tickets for these dates, you will be refunded automatically within 10 working days, and you do not need to contact us to action your refund.

Advance booking is currently suspended for this period of time. The gardens, café and shop will remain open, at a reduced price. These tickets will only be available on the day from the site.

This colourful Longhorn beetle was snapped by one of our volunteers in our walled garden. Look closely to see what you c...
29/07/2021

This colourful Longhorn beetle was snapped by one of our volunteers in our walled garden. Look closely to see what you can spot on your next visit and post your pics here! We love to see them! Book your tickets at http://bit.ly/Down-House

This colourful Longhorn beetle was snapped by one of our volunteers in our walled garden. Look closely to see what you can spot on your next visit and post your pics here! We love to see them! Book your tickets at http://bit.ly/Down-House

This patch of lawn may look like we forgot to mow it, but in fact it’s a recreation of Darwin’s Lawn Experiment. He allo...
26/07/2021

This patch of lawn may look like we forgot to mow it, but in fact it’s a recreation of Darwin’s Lawn Experiment. He allowed nature to take its course in a square of his lawn to see which plants would thrive and survive, testing which were best adapted to their surroundings. Which do you think were the “fittest”? Book your tickets at http://bit.ly/Down-House

Whether you're happy, sad, angry or scared, come and see ceramic sculptor Jo Pearl's thought-provoking sculptural and an...
23/07/2021
Moving Darwin Installation by Jo Pearl

Whether you're happy, sad, angry or scared, come and see ceramic sculptor Jo Pearl's thought-provoking sculptural and animated installation, Moving Darwin, here at Down House. Running from 26th July to 5th September, the exhibition explores Darwin's lesser-known thesis The Expression of Emotions in Man and Animals, which was penned here at Down House in 1872.

Plus, on Monday 26th July there will be the opportunity for you to get hands-on with the artist and have a go at making your own clay emotion!

For more information, visit our website: https://bit.ly/3xaPYQp

Come and see ceramic sculptor Jo Pearl's thought-provoking sculptural and animated installation, Moving Darwin at Charles Darwin's beautiful family home, Down House.

We’ve had to put these beautiful Blush Noisette roses - a favourite of Emma Darwin’s - behind chicken wire for their own...
23/07/2021

We’ve had to put these beautiful Blush Noisette roses - a favourite of Emma Darwin’s - behind chicken wire for their own safety…the local deer love to snack on them! We’re hoping to grow a rose archway on the path to the glasshouse so keep checking back for progress updates! As long as we can keep those deer away! Book tickets at http://bit.ly/Down-House

We love spotting butterflies in our garden! We've been creating wild flower areas to help support local insect life and ...
21/07/2021

We love spotting butterflies in our garden! We've been creating wild flower areas to help support local insect life and have had a chalk bank built by the Brilliant Butterflies Conservation project which will help to encourage more butterflies in the future.

Want to help with butterfly conservation research? Why not take part in The Big Butterfly Count? Follow this link to find out more and join in before 8th August. https://bigbutterflycount.butterfly-conservation.org

Darwin’s son Francis, himself a botanist, suggested that Dipsacus sylvestris (now fullonum) otherwise known as teasels, ...
20/07/2021

Darwin’s son Francis, himself a botanist, suggested that Dipsacus sylvestris (now fullonum) otherwise known as teasels, were carnivorous. He thought that rain water which collects in the bowl-like base of their leaves could act as a trap for insects, to be absorbed by the plant for nutrients. He submitted a paper to the Royal Society but unfortunately his theory was never proven and despite his father’s encouragement he eventually abandoned his work on teasels. See if you can spot them in our garden on your next visit. http://bit.ly/Down-House

On a sunny day what better place for an al fresco lunch than our picnic area in Darwin’s walled garden? We’ve even insta...
17/07/2021

On a sunny day what better place for an al fresco lunch than our picnic area in Darwin’s walled garden? We’ve even installed a refreshment tent for a well earned slice of cake or ice cream after exploring Darwin’s house and garden! Book your tickets at http://bit.ly/Down-House

On a sunny day what better place for an al fresco lunch than our picnic area in Darwin’s walled garden? We’ve even installed a refreshment tent for a well earned slice of cake or ice cream after exploring Darwin’s house and garden! Book your tickets at http://bit.ly/Down-House

Address

Luxted Road, Downe, Kent
Orpington
BR6 7JT

From Orpington Station take the R8 bus towards Downe. ( one bus per hour - does not run on Sunday's and bank holidays. From Bromley South/North Stations take the 146 bus towards Downe.

General information

The house, gardens and tea room are open everyday. Please note that the last entry to the house and gardens is at 16:00pm. The tea room serves lunch until 3pm daily.

Opening Hours

Monday 10am - 5pm
Tuesday 9am - 5pm
Wednesday 9am - 5pm
Thursday 10am - 5pm
Friday 10am - 5pm
Saturday 10am - 4pm
Sunday 10am - 5pm

Telephone

01689 859119

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Explore Down House

With its unique place in the history of science and evolution, Down House, the family home of world-renowned scientist Charles Darwin, is a must-see. HOUSE RULES This page is designed as a place to discuss Down House - to share tips for a great day out at the house, upcoming events and news from the property. We love hearing the ideas and opinions of our social community, and encourage you to leave comments, photos, videos and links (‘content’) here on our page. However, in the interests of our whole community, by using this site you accept our ‘house rules’ and agree that any content posted by you on our page will follow these rules. Content posted on our page must not: • be threatening, violent, attacking or harassing towards other users • contain or promote discrimination based on race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, s*x, gender, s*xual orientation, disability or medical conditions • be defamatory of any other person • constitute trolling, repeat off-topic discussions or repeatedly contain similar comments • be obscene, offensive or inflammatory • constitute unlawful activity, or be deemed to support unlawful activity • disclose the name, address, telephone, mobile or fax number, email address or any other personal data in respect of any individual • contain links to files which contain malicious software • infringe any copyright, database right, trademark or other intellectual property rights of any other person • impersonate any person, or misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person • advertise any products or personal projects which are unrelated to the discussion, Down House or the work of English Heritage If we consider that any of our house rules have been broken, we will take whatever action we feel is appropriate, including deleting any content. We support Facebook’s community standards, and ask that you do, too: www.facebook.com/communitystandards If you have any questions about the house rules, Down House, the work of English Heritage, membership or queries that need a more in depth answer our Customer Services team would be happy to help. Please email us at [email protected].

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Comments

The Bewick Society have a post concerning a book once owned by wood engraver Gwen Raverat, granddaughter of Charles Darwin.
The Kitchen Garden looked pretty spectacular this morning as the Calendula, left to grow during the lockdown, was in brilliant sunshine.
Hi all! Thank you SO much for re opening today. It was beautiful and so great to have the Meadow open.
If you're nearby this weekend, it's not too late to see the amazingly creative display of Christmas Trees in Cudham Church (Church Approach, Cudham Lane, Cudham TN14 7QF). The church will be open on Saturday 7th 12noon-5pm, Sunday 12noon-5pm (You will be welcome at the Sunday service at 11am too - Guest preacher Ven Paul Wright, Archdeacon of Bromley and Bexley-Sunday Club for 3-11's during the service.) pcd.org.uk
It’s 150 years since the publication of the 5th Edition of Charles Darwin’s Origin of the Species in February 1869, which included the words ‘Survival of the Fittest’. Dr Denis Alexander will be addressing the question ‘Survival of the Fittest – an idea alien to Christian Faith?’ with an illustrated talk at Downe Village Hall, High Street Downe BR6 7UT. The hall is a place Darwin knew well, given its location in the centre of ‘Darwin’s Village’ as he supported its work and spoke there himself on several occasions. World renowned speaker and author Dr Denis Alexander is the Emeritus Director of the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion at St Edmund's College, Cambridge, a molecular biologist and an author on science and religion, including his latest publication ‘Is there purpose in biology?’ Rt Rev Simon Burton-Jones, Bishop of Tonbridge will be introducing the evening, and there will be time for questions after the talk. Admission Free, retiring offering and refreshments. ‘Survival of the Fittest – an idea alien to Christian Faith?’ with Dr Denis Alexander, 7.30pm Friday 15th November 2019, Downe Village Hall, High Street Downe BR6 7UT Bus 146 serves Downe Village, and there is on-street parking nearby. This event is being hosted by St Mary’s Downe - further information from Rev John Musson, [email protected] tel 01959 571515
Brilliant to see that Alan Titchmarsh had it down as his second favourite garden.
I think my grand daughter belongs here!!
We’re recruiting We are currently looking for people to join our local catering team at Down House - English Heritage Hours are between 10am - 6pm. Monday - Sunday April to October with flexible contracts available May suit students or part time. £8.21 p/h To find out more about the vacancy visit http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/about-us/our-people/jobs/job-search/job/?ref=11552 The deadline for this vacancy will be on 19th May 2019
The adventure quest we found Seymour