Which countryhouse opera is the most accessible?

Which countryhouse opera is the most accessible?


norman lebrecht

May 22, 2017

Not Glyndebourne. It takes more than an hour of a filthy train followed by a winding-road coach ride which, on return, is not coordinated with the train timetable.

The Grange is in Hampshire, reachable only by road.

Longborough is even further out.

Garsington has been the best until now – half an hour by train from Marylebone with a nice connecting bus.

But Wasfi Kani is claiming that her new Grange Park Opera at West Horsley Place is the closest to town.

It’s a 45-minute ride from Kings Cross and a 20-minute stroll from the station.

We’ll check it out soon.


  • Tom says:

    Good luck getting to Horsley from Kings Cross!! Try Waterloo next time.

    • Una says:

      Ha, ha, ha … yes, try Waterloo or even Victoria!!

      Everyone travelling from London! isn’t there enough in London without the expense of going out into the Styx. One of them a twenty-minute ‘stroll’!!! LOL if it’s piddling down with rain and turn up like a drowned rat!

      London to Opera North is the cheapest option but sadly for all you London-based people, it’s not a country house! And the train can be as cheap as £27 return if you play your cards right and book in advance, get a ticket for £25 or less, and a hotel in Bradford (not Leeds unless you want to add on another £100) for £38 in the Ibis or £50 for Hotel Express! Much better than watching opera on telly!

      Anyhow, each to his own.

  • Halldor says:

    D’uh – its Clonter obviously. 40 mins train from Piccadilly to Congleton or Holmes Chapel, then a quick taxi ride.

    Oh…you meant from LONDON? Well, if you will insist on living in an extreme southeastern corner of the country you can hardly complain about accessibility. “Longborough is even further out”. Priceless. They do say there be dragons in them there Cotswolds. Practically the land of the midnight sun, apparently.

  • John Groves says:

    Glyndebourne is easy to get to – 30 minutes in the car over quiet roads: tickets from about £20 for the ‘tour’ productions. The real downside is getting out of the car park in under an hour afterwards!!

    • Alexander Davidson says:

      30 minutes in the car from where? From where I live in London it’s more like 2 hours.

      • Simon says:

        And from where I live near Gydenbourne it is over 2 hours to ROH, ENO, Barbican, RFH, Wigmore Hall, St John Smith square, RAH, Cadogan Hall…to name but a few.

  • The Grange Festival is easily reached from Waterloo! It’s about 45 minutes on the train from Waterloo to Basingstoke and they’re organising shuttle buses from Basingstoke stations, which they didn’t do before https://thegrangefestival.co.uk/how-to-find-us/ . They’ve also added wheelchair access, smoothed the bumpy road to the opera house so access which seems pretty good to me!

  • Ronald Scott says:

    JUst how convenient are these houses for residents of the North Est of England?

  • Art of Fugue says:

    When I attend Glyndebourne, I stay at my brother’s place and get a taxi both ways, no messing about on pub transport with my hamper,which has a webcam and alarm to my iphone!

  • ShowOperaontheTelly says:

    Opera obviously needs to be on BBC4 if only the wassocks would listen to my complaints ad nauseum. Then you can watch Tannhauser etc, in comfort with a glass of Champagne, heaven! Just keep putting in complaints to BBC TV. If they get enough they might wise up. In Austria you can watch operas, Salzburg concerts, etc why not on BBC?