Self-led School Groups Visiting the Gardens

Teachers are welcome to visit the gardens with their class.  All we ask is that you let us know in advance. Just drop a quick email to the Hallplaceeducation@bexley.gov.uk

We want you to have the best visit possible. Sometimes we do have to close parts of the gardens for maintenance & filming. We also need to manage all the schools onsite with regards to health & safety and use of the shared facilities like the toilets.  Hall Place is very popular with school groups and can have several schools onsite at any one time. It’s not fun all queuing for the toilets at the same time.  If you let us know, we can help you by advising if there are any issues that you need to be aware of.

We can also advise you if there is anything we can offer to make your visit even better. Did you know that you can download a copy of our Tree-mendous Tree Trail for free?

For self-led groups, our Education Room can be booked as a HQ and lunch room with its own private toilets for £23.50 per hour for a minimum of 3 hours. Unfortunately, there are no other inside areas where schools can eat or congregate.

Our Booking Pack has more information and includes maps and general site risk assessments.

Top Tips for Self-led school visits to the gardens

Here are a few tips to make your visit run smoothly when booking a self-led visit. 

Historic House 

  • If you wish to visit inside the historic house this requires pre-booking with the Education Officer as the house is not currently open to the general public 


  • Please note that all the seating inside the Visitor Centre is for Riverside Café patrons and only those who purchase from the café can use the seating. This also applies to the cafes outside seating area 
  • If you require an inside space for lunch it will need to be booked in advance. Please see our website for more details 
  • Groups can always picnic in the gardens when the weather allows 
  • Please make sure you take your rubbish away with you or place it in the bins provided 


  • Students are the responsibility of their accompanying adults. Accompanying adults are expected to remain with any students under the age of 18 and supervise them at all times for health & safety reasons. It is not appropriate for accompanying adults to leave their students alone i.e. whilst sitting in the café. Takeaway drinks are available so that adults can return to their group immediately 
  • You will be sharing the site with the general public and often other groups. Please be mindful of noise levels and respect others 
  • In the summer months we use water sprinklers – it can be very inviting in the heat to run into the sprinklers but please be aware that the water isn’t clean enough for this 


  • Toilets are located within the Visitor Centre and are open to the general public and other visiting groups  
  • If another group has already queued to use the toilets, please be patient and wait to use the facilities 
  • If visiting the toilets as a large group i.e. primary school students, please try not to block the entrance to the toilets (especially the disabled toilet) or fire escape 
  • We would much appreciate it if you check that your group has left the toilets clean and tidy with all taps turned off before leaving 

Make a day of it with these additional learning experiences and resources

young boy holding live owl

Jambs Owls

Run by Jambs Owls, an independent company.

Visit the Parliament of Owls (that’s what a group of owls are called), visitor-friendly barn owls, eagle owls and many other species, hear about how owls survive in the wild, what they like to eat and their nocturnal habits.

Jambs Owls information

Cost: £3 per child, adults free

Capacity: Jambs Owls Experience a whole class. Ratio of 1 adult for every 5 children required. Each visit is a wow factor the children never forget.

What it includes: a tailored visit with an expert looking at the different owls, their lifecycle, and their lives in the environment they live in.

Location: In the Glasshouses near the entrance to the gardens.

Lunches: Sorry there is no lunch space here. Please see Visiting the Gardens for more advice.

Please visit the main Jambs Owls Experience page for more information.

Jambs Owls are also available for outreach visits to schools.

Event Advertising Walks and Talks

Tree-mendous Tree Trail

This is a adult led trail learning about different trees in the formal garden area. It includes a map, images, fascinating facts and suggested discussion points with your students.

Cost:  Free. Download and print at school. You will need one sheet per adult

Capacity: Please visit the trees in smaller groups

What it includes: A self-led trail around the formal garden highlighting 6 different trees, their leaves and seeds. Also includes some simple activities to try.  Divide your class into smaller groups and print off one trail sheet per adult to lead with. Includes easy to follow map.

Location: Outside in the gardens