Agatha Christie said Greenway, which nestles beautifully on the edge of the River Dart, was ‘the loveliest place in the world’, and although I probably shouldn’t admit it, it’s one of my favourite places to visit.
Our most beloved queen of crime made this typically Georgian house her holiday home from 1938 until 1959, and since being opened to the public for the very first time in 2009, visitors have been able to the view the many personal collections and mementoes of our best-loved mystery writer and her family.
Here is a house that portrays the spirit of a holiday home in its 1950s heyday. Agatha Christie gathered with her family and friends here for long summer days together, often to celebrate a novel just completed for publication.
Agatha Christie’s family gave Greenway to the National Trust in 2000 and for several years visitors were able to enjoy the beautiful woodland garden, with its romantic pathways that lead down to the Dart estuary. The house however, as the home of her daughter and son-in-law, Rosalind and Anthony Hicks, remained closed to the public for their quiet retirement. Following their deaths in 2004 and 2005, the house passed to the Trust, along with the generous gift from Agatha Christie’s grandson, Mathew Prichard, of the majority of the contents.
One of the most frequent comments made about Greenway is its ‘informality’, ‘it feels just like they are visiting Agatha and her family, with some coming to visit again and again throughout the season because each time they visit they learn something new either about the house or the history of its infamous family.
Visitors to Greenway are once again strongly encouraged to visit the property via the most scenic route, via ferry from Dartmouth. During its first year over 55% of visitors reached the property via a green transport way.
In addition to the rooms open to daily visitors, part of the house is available as a holiday apartment, continuing Greenway’s legacy as a holiday retreat, accommodating up to ten. The holiday apartment can be booked via the National Trust Holiday Cottages Website on www.nationaltrustcottages.co.uk
Due to traffic restrictions in the lanes leading to the property all visitors are encouraged to arrive by green ways to Greenway. However, visitors wishing to arrive by car can do so by prior booking only at www.nationaltrust.org.uk/greenway or by telephone 01803 842382 (during normal office hours).
You can also find out more about Greenway at its facebook site and also follow them on twitter.