Northampton is home to a number of cultural gems, which draw in visitors from far and wide.

The historic Royal Theatre dates back to 1884, and as one of the leading repertory companies in England, it attracted big names from stage and screen including Hollywood legend Errol Flynn.

In 1984, the Royal was absorbed by the Derngate theatre complex, but maintained its separate identity as part of the Royal & Derngate. The new complex quickly established a reputation for promoting quality productions and acts and is widely regarded as one of the foremost theatres in the region.

In 2013, on its namesake’s Birthday, the Errol Flynn filmhouse opened, further adding to the theatre’s entertainment package. The popularity of the filmhouse saw a second screen built in 2017, so now theatre, show and film can be found in one location within the town’s Cultural Quarter.

78 Derngate is a short wander down the road, and another star attraction as the only house in England remodelled in an iconic modernist style by the renowned Scottish architect and designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Mackintosh’s client was the thoroughly modern Northampton model engineer W.J Bassett-Lowke. The house celebrated its centenary in 2017, marking 100 years since the Bassett-Lowke family moved there in March 1917.

Northampton’s Museum and Art Gallery in the heart of the Cultural Quarter, is currently closed for an exciting expansion programme, and is due to re-open in the autumn of 2019, to include new galleries, activity space and café.

Visitors can still enjoy Abington Park Museum, a Grade I listed, 15th century manor house, set in the beautiful grounds of Abington Park. Collections include military and the Northamptonshire Regiment, social history, natural science, Egyptology and costume. The Museum of Leathercraft maintains a permanent gallery on the ground floor.

For information about tourist attractions throughout the county, including the many historic houses, gardens, churches, museums and parks, visit Northamptonshire: Britain’s Best Surprise