National Trust offers free access to parklands and gardens during coronavirus social distancing period

The National Trust is aiming to keep its parks, gardens and open spaces in the countryside and coastal regions open free of charge – but will be closing its houses, shops and cafes during the coronavirus social distancing period.

Kinder Estate sign, Peak District National Park,UK

Updated 22nd March 2020: National Trust gardens and parks now closed. We will continue to update this page

Read the message from the National Trust:

From midnight on 21 March we will close all of our gated gardens and parks to help restrict the spread of the coronavirus.


The move follows the closure of pubs, restaurants, cafes, gyms and leisure centres announced by the government on Friday, and tightening travel restrictions and public health advice.

We know that people are likely to need space and fresh air in the coming weeks and months and we will do all we can to provide access wherever possible and where it is safe to do so. Our countryside and coastal locations remain open with parking charges waived, but we encourage people to stay local and observe social distancing measures. Full details,

In response to the increasing numbers of safety measures advised by the government to limit the spread of the new coronavirus, COVID-19, the National Trust has announced that it plans to keep as many of its parks and gardens open and free of charge.

The National Trust’s houses, cafés and shops will close by Friday 20 March.

“The National Trust was founded 125 years ago for the benefit of the entire nation,” says the National Trust’s director-general Hilary McGrady. “We want to honour our mission – to enable people and nature to thrive. Over the coming weeks we will do all that we can to keep on providing public benefit through caring for places and giving people access wherever possible.”

“While we will close our indoor areas to help fight the spread of coronavirus, we recognise that people are likely to need access to open space.”

This follows the UK government’s advice to stop non-essential contact with other people and avoid all unnecessary travel, known as social distancing.

Whilst social distancing, people should work from home when possible, spend less time in public places, and avoid social venues.


Self-isolating is a different measure, where people need to cut themselves off from the rest of the world, even avoiding leaving the house to buy food or essentials.

Coronavirus: what is social distancing and self isolating?