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Abbot Hall Art Gallery

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Abbot Hall Art Gallery Kirkland, Kendal LA9 5AL, England
Phone Number:
+44 1539 722464
10:30 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Mon - Sat 10:30 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours

Abbot Hall was designed as a opulent house by architect John Carr of York...

Abbot Hall was designed as a opulent house by architect John Carr of York in 1759 for Colonel George Wilson of Dallam Tower. Recognised as Kendal's finest building, it was lived in by a succession of different families over the next century. It was purchased by the Kendal Corporation in 1896 for £3,750.

Together with the Castle and the Parish Church, Abbot Hall was the only Grade I listed building in Kendal. By the 1950s it was almost derelict and threatened with demolition until a group of local people formed a charitable trust and raised money to save it. It opened as a public art gallery in 1962.

Today Kendal’s finest historic house is an award winning art gallery. Our exhibitions showcase a variety of works by a wealth of international artists. The Georgian period rooms allow you to glimpse what life was like in another time and provide views of the River Kent and Kendal Castle.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 114 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 51
  • 35
    Very good
  • 20
  • 5
  • 1
Take the tour if you can

A lovely small gallery with major artists featured. I was lucky to be there at the start of a small tour and it added to the experience, and was nice to chat with other visitors... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 4 October 2015
Harrogate, United Kingdom
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114 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 112: English reviews
Harrogate, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 October 2015

A lovely small gallery with major artists featured. I was lucky to be there at the start of a small tour and it added to the experience, and was nice to chat with other visitors. The Lady Ann Clifford painting was the highlight for me. I would also recommend the museum on the same site as it is amazing what... More 

1 Thank Alitho10
Carlisle, England
Level Contributor
81 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 September 2015

A short stroll from the town centre, this gallery is well signposted and easy to find. The building is beautiful and has good facilities. I've marked it down slightly because I thought it was expensive for its size and the rooms would not be large enough to show larger pieces. It has a good mix of traditional and modern art... More 

1 Thank mumandgirl
Liverpool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1,119 reviews
522 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2,192 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 September 2015 via mobile

This excellent gallery hosts a range of exhibitions throughout the year and attracts some very important works. Highlights have included L S Lowry, Barbara Hepworth, the St Ives School and many more. There is a permanent collection featuring some excellent portraits by George Romney, who lived just a few yards along the road. Lovely setting and a great little tea... More 

5 Thank Howi58
Cockermouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
34 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 September 2015

Varied and important exhibitions throughout the year. A number of watercolours by Turner and Cotman on regular display

1 Thank Philip C
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
83 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 August 2015

Lovely gallery set in quiet parkland near the River Kent at the south end of town a stroll from the shops. Interesting special shows staged (St Ives artists featured on our trip). Excellent small shop also selling oriental art alongside books, postcards etc.

1 Thank PDeZylva
Runcorn, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
128 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2015

Small but interesting art gallery. The ground floor included a good collection of watercolours by Turner, Constable and Ruskin plus portraits by George Romney who studied art in Kendal. Upstairs was the St Ives exhibition, which is mainly abstract & I didn't get any of them but maybe that's me. Uta Kögelsberger photographs of golden eagle eggs are rather different.... More 

Thank NickJCarey
West Sussex, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
164 reviews
142 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 August 2015

Rather a small, but none the less clean, gallery in the centre of Kendal. It was well signposted and has an adjacent car park. When we arrived some children's holiday activities were taking place, so the place was rather noisy and busy. This said, the children were not in the shop and that did have some interesting art related resources.

Thank Helen J
Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Level Contributor
26 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 August 2015

I visited this gallery twice when in the Kendal area , and recommended it to some friends who enjoy art and galleries . We both experienced the same "reprimand " ! On each occasion we had a friend with us who is learning to appreciate art , so as ourselves teachers in the art world , we quietly answered questions... More 

2 Thank Yvonnecaroline
Preston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
65 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 July 2015

I was awestruck by the modern art from St Ives in the current exhibition as well as some of the older art showing Anne Clifford by means of a triptych as well as the picture of the Gower family.

1 Thank KennethC767
Cerritos, California
Level Contributor
513 reviews
257 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 145 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 July 2015

We stopped here during a day trip to Kendal. We were interested in seeing the exhibit of Romney paintings. Unfortunately, we arrived at 4 and they close at 5 so our time was limited. Some of the galleries focus on modern art; not our taste so we skipped that part. The museum is right along the river which made for... More 

Thank Barbara F

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