People: Interviews

James and Sophie Perkins

Owners of Aynhoe Park, Oxfordshire


James and Sophie Perkins – the couple behind Aynhoe Park, one of the UK’s favourite country piles – sure know how to throw a party. Ahead of hosting another year of Aynhoe Backstage at Wilderness, James and Sophie give us some of their favourite Cotswolds spots, for a pre/post Wilderness stop or your next visit.

For a long lunch, it has to be Muddy Duck in Hethe or Chequers in Churchill.

The best bar is The Owners Bar at Aynhoe Park – there is no better place at 3am.

For a health fix, there’s an amazing 20-mile mountain bike ride from Aynhoe Park to Tusmore Park along a bridle path through unspoilt countryside which spans several private estates.

To celebrate, there’s only one place for us – Aynhoe Park, our home. With 14 years in the making, 38 bedrooms, our own private club in the cellar, frozen margaritas, a Funktion-One soundsystem, 20,000 of the best DJ mixes and of course our fabulous team of butlers, we create the ultimate experience. We want people to enjoy this house as much as we do; this house was designed for entertaining.

To treat yourself, book in at the Bamford Haybarn Spa in Daylesford.

For Aynhoe news: here at Aynhoe, we are forever evolving – that’s what makes us so exciting! We dream up a new idea and make it happen. We’ve completed restoring the original kitchen from 1610 and we are six weeks away from finishing our 12 new exciting bedrooms in the west wing, with plans for the grounds and a new pool  just around the corner.

If you’re coming to Aynhoe Backstage, don’t miss: to drink: frozen margaritas from our butler; to eat: guinea fowl burgers with tomato salad.

*Portrait by Robert Wilson.

Originally published on
22nd July 2019


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