National Arboretum | Westonbirt
The National Arboretum
Westonbirt, the National Arboretum, is renowned worldwide for its tree and shrub collection. It contains nearly 16,000 specimens, including almost half of those woody plants known to grow in the world's temperate climate zone, and covers 600 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds. Its importance is recognised by English Heritage's Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historical Interest as a Grade 1 registered Landscape.
Westonbirt is managed by the Forestry Commission and the Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum (www.fowa.org.uk). Visitor numbers are just under 370,000 per annum with a membership of 25,000.
Westonbirt Arboretum was established in 1829 by wealthy landowner Robert Holford, and later developed by his son, George Holford. Much of Westonbirt's renowned autumn colour is often credited to Sir George's plantings of Japanese maples between 1875 and 1900, many of which are still alive today. Unlike many arboreta, Westonbirt is laid out according to aesthetic appeal rather than scientific or geographical criteria, and the Holfords' legacy is open for all to enjoy - a beautiful, relaxing and unique day out amongst some of the tallest, oldest and rarest trees and shrubs in Britain.
Westonbirt is home to the National Japanese Maple (acer) Collection, with over 200 different types in the collection. The Forestry Commission opened Westonbirt Arboretum to the public in 1961, and in 1966 a new Acer Glade was established alongside the original one planted by Robert and George Holford in 1870. Today we are in the process of creating the world’s best collection of maples.
Westonbirt Arboretum is three miles south-west of Tetbury on the A433 (Tetbury to Bath Road). It is 10 miles north-east of Junction 18 of the M4 and south-east of Junction 13 of the M5.
The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands. Further information can be found at www.forestry.gov.uk
OPENING AND CLOSING TIMES
SPRING/SUMMER (1 MARCH - 30 SEPTEMBER) OPENING TIMES:
Monday to Friday 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.
AUTUMN/WINTER OPENING TIMES:
9 a.m. - 5 p.m. (or DUSK if earlier)
FOREST SHOP, PLANT CENTRE. MAPLES RESTAURANT, AND COURTYARD CAFE OPENING TIMES:
Every day: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
(Courtyard Cafe closed from Christmas to Easter)
- Spring and summer (1 March - 30 September): Adult £8, Concession £7, Child £3, Under 5 Free
- Autumn (1 October - 30 November): Adult £9, Concession £8, Child £4, Under 5 Free
- Winter (1 - 31 December): Adult £6, Concession £5, Child £2, Under 5 Free
ADMISSION PRICES FOR SPECIAL EVENTS:
- Kids Go Free, 23 July -31 August
- Festival of the Tree, 23 - 26 August: Adult £8, Concession £7, Child Free
- Exhibitree, 27 - 30 August: Adult £6, Concession £9, Child Free
- Enchanted Christmas, every Fri/Sat/Sun 26 November - 19 December: Adult £8, Concession £7, Child £4, Under 5 Free
- Concession rate applies to: senior citizens, students and disabled adults (concession rate for a disabled adult includes free entry for one carer per disabled adult)
- Child rate applies to 18 years and under
- Disabled children aged 18 years and under will be charged the normal child admission rate, as above
GROUPS OF TEN OR MORE:
- Adults: £6
- Seniors: £5
- Concessions: £5
- Children: £2
- Carers: Free
From M4 (approx 15 mins)
Exit motorway at Junction 18.
Take the A46 north towards Stroud.
After a few miles turn right onto the A433 (signed Cirencester) . Continue on this road for approx 3 miles and the Arboretum is on your left.
From M5 (approx 20mins)
Exit at Junction 13 onto the A419 (towards Stroud).
Take the A46 (towards Bath).
After going though Nailsworth, come to traffic lights at X-roads.
Turn left onto A4135 to Tetbury.
In Tetbury, turn right onto the A433.
Continue on this road, passing through Doughton, for approx 3 miles. The Arboretum is on your right.
Tetbury, Gloucestershire, GL8 8QS
Tel (Mon-Fri): 01666 880220
Fax: 01666 880559
Forest Shop tel: 01666 881224
Plant Centre tel: 01666 880544
Maples Restaurant tel: 01666 880064