Downton Inspired Holiday Homes for Lording It Up

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Great British country houses from Owners Direct to stay like the stars of Downton Abbey as new series starts.

Symondsbury Manor

Live like a lord or lady in your own stately getaway

With series five of posh period drama Downton Abbey hitting UK screens, fans are being invited to live like a lord or lady on their own stately getaway.

Holiday home specialist Owners Direct has picked some of its premium country mansions where fans of the hit ITV show can turn back the clock and play master and servant, whether upstairs or down.

The official trailer for the new series – starring Hugh Bonneville, Maggie Smith and Jim Carter – is brimming with burning passion and saucy secrets as we catch up with the Crawley family in 1920s Britain.

These upper-class homes available for rent with Owners Direct promise just as much excitement and drama for an aristocratic weekend away with friends or family.

Top 10 Downton Abbey Experiences

Symondsbury Manor in Dorset has attracted a large number of celebrities for weekend house parties. The house is decorated in an interestingly eclectic and colourful style with a large collection of art, hand printed wallpapers and Designers Guild fabrics. The large, sixty feet long living room overlooks the beautiful gardens, and five of the bedrooms feature four-poster beds. The area had become famous as a 'foodie' heaven with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Mark Hix's restaurants in the immediate vicinity. Prices start from around £6,370 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 23 people in 12 bedrooms.

Buckland House is a Grade II mansion set in 280 acres of gardens and woodland in rural Devon. The magnificent mansion offers splendid accommodation including a two-storey gallery ballroom, impressive staircase, Tudor sitting room and library. Many original features remain with decorative fireplaces and pillared porticos. The grounds feature a lake with coarse fish and an outdoor swimming pool. Prices start from around £3,600 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 30 people in 15 bedrooms.

River Hall sits high above Bideford Bay, set in perfect parkland and deep within the Devon dream. Effortlessly elegant, warm and welcoming, the property sleeps 22 with room for a few more children, and additional guests in the coach house. There’s oodles of downstairs space to enjoy, entertain and escape in, including a country kitchen with all the mod cons and a stunning dining room for elegant eating. Prices start from around £3,300 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 30 people in 15 bedrooms.

Middleham House is a charming 18th century Georgian manor in Yorkshire, set in three acres of private walled garden and situated in the heart of picturesque Middleham. The house offers a tranquil setting, whilst minutes' walk from local restaurants, pubs, galleries and shops. Recently refurbished to a high standard, the house retains its original artworks and antiques, yet offers the latest modern facilities. The charm and atmosphere of the house reflects its two hundred years of family history and gives guests the authentic elegant English private country house experience. Prices start from around £2,518 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 21 people in 10 bedrooms.

Fairfield House has been renovated from a derelict state to provide boutique accommodation in Stanhope, Weardale, County Durham, on the Coast 2 Coast cycle route. The interior is styled with a classic yet contemporary design, with a large games room, open-plan sitting and dining room with views across the front gardens and a small snug with bar. The exterior boasts an all-weather tennis court and a hot tub, and the small town is a few minutes' walk and has a variety of shops and pubs. Prices start from around £2,199 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 16 people in 8 bedrooms.

Regency Estate in the heart of Norfolk near Thetford Forest is a classical mansion sprawling over 24 acres of prime parkland. As well as the 16 bedrooms, there is a grand entrance hall with marble fireplace, drawing room, tea room, dining room and garden room. Downstairs there is a games room while the property also has a heated swimming pool and hot tub. Prices start from £6,500 for a seven-night stay; sleeping 28 people in the main house and two cottages (with a third being available from January 2015).

The Hall is set in stunning grounds near Belford in Northumberland. With 10 bedrooms, most with en-suites, a selection of sumptuous sitting areas with open fires, a formal dining room complemented by two kitchens, a games room and elegant orangery. Outside, guests at The Hall will enjoy a terrace with furniture and BBQ, and the extensive grounds with lawns, woodland and lakes. Prices start from around £3,785 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 24 people in 10 bedrooms.

Bryn Tanat Hall is an elegant country retreat in Llansantffraid ym Mechain, Powys. Personally run by a family, the Hall dates back to the late 17th Century and has a long established reputation as one of the best country houses providing luxury group accommodation in North Wales. Set in 14 acres of landscaped gardens, parkland and woodland, the hall features sumptuous fireplaces, a baby grand piano and a well-stocked library as well as modern touches like WiFi and a hot tub. Prices start from around £3,000 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 24 people in 12 bedrooms.

Northmoor is a sensitively restored house in Exmoor National Park, Somerset, little altered since Victorian times and retaining many original features, such as servants bells and the butler’s bath stowed in a cupboard. The billiards room, along with table tennis, darts and table football provide plenty of indoor entertainment. A disabled access bathroom and bedroom on the ground floor, and no steps throughout the ground floor, mean that Northmoor can be enjoyed by all. Prices start from around £3,600 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 24 people in 13 bedrooms.

Sibton Park is one of East Anglia’s hidden architectural gems, nestled in the rolling landscape of the Yox Valley, rural Suffolk. The graceful mansion house is surrounded by 350 acres of its own private grounds and is part of a thriving estate. The estate offers a wide range of country pursuits including a renowned driven game shoot, course fishing and a 27-hole golf course. The house has exquisite reception rooms on the ground floor, including a dining room seating 24 and a beautiful drawing room with hand-painted wallpaper. Prices start from around £4,000 for a seven-night rental; sleeps up to 24 people in 12 bedrooms.

Series 5 of Downton Abbey begins on Sunday 21 September, 9pm, ITV1.

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