FAMILIES can step back in time to enjoy the longest day Regency-style at Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens.
A Midsummer Evening Picnic will take place at the historic estate tomorrow, giving visitors the rare opportunity to explore the grounds after hours on the longest day of the year.
During the special open evening, people can take along a picnic and relax on the lawns, and to tie in with the ongoing Regency costume displays at the hall, there will be a duo of characters to chat to.
A Regency gardener can be found exploring the grounds, telling of the landscape of the estate and passing on his tips, while the lady of the house will take tea on the lawn, explaining the customs and costumes of the age.
The picnic runs from 7pm to 9.30pm.
The weekend of Regency life continues on Saturday and Sunday when families are again entitled to pack a picnic and meet the characters through the day.
This time the lady will discuss the history of tea drinking, its health benefits, the intricacies of making a good brew and how it used to be kept under lock and key.
There will also be the opportunity to have a go at archery with a team of experts for a small extra charge.
The picnic runs from 11am to 4.30pm on both days, with archery sessions available from noon on Sunday only.
Belsay continues to play host to an exhibition of TV and film costumes from a variety of Jane Austen adaptations, including the shirt worn by Colin Firth as Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice and the dress worn by Gwyneth Paltrow in Emma.
The exhibition runs until Monday, August 26.
Admission to the English Heritage property costs £7.90, £7.10 concessions and £4.70 for children aged five to 15.