THE Regency period was a time of colourful decadence and indulgence for the wealthy. The Vyne’s owner William Chute was no exception, and his love of entertaining gave him the local title of ‘the hospitable squire’.

The Vyne has famous literary Regency connections too, being nearby to the home of Jane Austen’s elder brother, James Austen, who was vicar of the parish. The two families dined regularly together and met at social events such as dances, dinner parties and card games. It is highly likely that Jane herself danced and dined at The Vyne.

On Saturday, visitors to The Vyne can re-live those days of Regency country life, when period characters take up residency at the house, to reveal more about the etiquette and social customs of the day.

The Vyne would have held regular shoots to which the gentry were invited, as well as hosting meets for the local hunts. On Regency Day, visitors can engage with members of a hunting party, who have set up camp in the grounds.

Traditionally, male members of aristocratic households often made their careers in the navy or army; indeed, William Chute’s younger brother Thomas was in the militia and regularly stayed at The Vyne in order to recruit in the Basingstoke area. On Regency Day, a lively military element is demonstrating, amongst other skills, the noisy and exciting art of musket ball-making and firing!

Other outdoor activities include sword play presentations, and a look into the world of 19th-century gardening and culinary practices with the help of The Vyne’s ‘Regency Gardener’.

Find out how the different social classes of the period dressed and dined, and danced: the authentically dressed Hampshire Regency Dancers perform a number of elegant Cotillians and Quadrilles in the beautiful Stone Gallery, as well as some lively country dances. They can also be seen picnicking on the lawns and strolling through the grounds.

For further information call The Vyne on 01256 883858 or visit