THIS MONTH we’re seizing the last of summer and taking in the sights of nature and shift in light before the gardens enter into a sleepy winter hibernation.

As summer fades into autumn you’ll begin to notice the change in season as shades of bronze and gold slowly start to appear and bursts of purple add a rich contrast.

The spindle tree (?Euonymus europaea) in the formal garden will turn bright red and have an abundance of scarlet fruits opening up to expose orange seed heads.

The red oak tree, next to the gravel driveway is at its best in October when it turns into a fiery red delight.

The trees that line the paths will be laden with apples, pears, plums, figs and mulberries; a sign of a great harvest.

In early September we’ll be exploring natural dyeing using rainbows of colours from crushed flowers, berries, roots and bark. You can come along to the drop-in session to try this traditional technique for yourself.

The Discovery Garden is a family favourite at this time of year, and the combination of children enjoying natural play surrounded by a multitude of autumn colours is a wonderful sight.

Children can join in with nature weaving and follow a colourful stick trail. Making mud pies, building dens, running through a willow tunnel are just a few of the other things that can be enjoyed.

On selected days we’ll be making butter in the barn and inviting children to roll up their sleeves and step into the role of gardener’s apprentice.

Inside the historic house we’ll be getting up close and personal to some of our favourite items in the collection every Wednesday and Sunday, and if you’d like to take an exclusive walk around the house before we’re open to visitors, then our ‘opening up the house’ tour is for you.

Booking is essential for this special tour.

Autumn wouldn’t be complete without a heart-warming recipe, and this autumn you can enjoy seasonal recipes in the cosy tea-room and be surrounded by history as you sit under 400-year-old beams.

Our favourite soup is made with parsnips, apples from the garden and sage from the herb border, and is a sell-out every time. The tea-room is a great place to meet friends and warm up after a stroll around the grounds.

In the shop there’s a wide selection of books available to buy to spark your creative flair. Kilner jars will be available if you wish to try the age-old tradition of butter-making at home, and mini-gardening tool kits will inspire young apprentices to get busy in their own gardens.

Entry to the shop and tea-room is free; entry to the house and garden is free for National Trust members and under-fives. General admission prices apply for non-National Trust members.

East Riddlesden Hall is open daily between Saturdays and Wednesdays, 10.30am to 4.30pm. The last admission is at 4pm. Visit for full details of all events.