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Hops and Harvest Festival at the National Trust's Scotney Castle

Autumn’s just around the corner and it's time to celebrate the hopping season at Scotney Castle’s Hops and Harvest Festival which runs through to Sunday, September 29.

The National Trust venue at Lamberhurst will mark the occasion at Little Scotney Farm - the trust’s only working hop farm and one of the last few in the region to pick, process and dry hops the traditional way.

Sacks filled with hops at Scotney Castle
Sacks filled with hops at Scotney Castle

Visitors can join a walking tour out to the hop farm to see inside the hoppers hut, the oast, the stripping shed and walk among the hops. The tour is rounded off with a taste of ale brewed from the on site.

For the first time, one of the hoppers huts will be dressed as if a family is living in it while they spend the summer working in the hop gardens.

Tim Parker from the trust said: “September is a wonderful season to visit Scotney Castle, to see the produce from the Walled Garden and the opportunity to visit the hop farm.

“As a privately-run working farm, it’s only possible to see it at this time of year and it really gives visitors the chance to step back in time.”

The highlight of the festival will be the Hops and Harvest weekend next week on Saturday, September 7 and Sunday, September 8 in the Walled Garden when produce grown at Scotney Castle will be on display.

The walled garden at Scotney Castle Picture: National Trust
The walled garden at Scotney Castle Picture: National Trust

Guided hop tours from Saturday, August 31 will be at 11am to 1pm and 2pm to 4pm. Tours cost £3 plus normal admission costs.

To find out more go to nationaltrust.org.uk

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