One of Norfolk's stately homes in the care of the National Trust saw a huge spike in visitor numbers following a six-year £6m restoration, new figures have revealed. 

The number of people who toured Oxburgh Hall, near Swaffham, shot up from 62,491 in the  2021/22 financial year to 90,534 in 2022/23 - a rise of 49pc. 

It came as a project to restore the moated building’s roof and gatehouse façade was finished last year - meaning visitors could view the manor without scaffolding and see inside all its visitor rooms for the first time in six years.

North Norfolk News: Oxburgh Hall under scaffolding during the restorationOxburgh Hall under scaffolding during the restoration (Image: Nicholas Farka)The trust’s other Norfolk stately homes were also busier. Visitor numbers to Blickling Hall rose 15pc, from 170,568 in 2021/22 to 196,436 in 2022/23. Fellbrigg Hall’s visitor numbers rose from 107,359 to 121,130 over the same period, a 13pc rise. 

Heather Jermy, Blickling Estate’s general manager, said 2022 saw the return of full opening without Covid restrictions.

“We were happy to see visitors return to connect with nature and heritage,” she said. 

North Norfolk News: Heather Jermy, Blickling Estate’s general managerHeather Jermy, Blickling Estate’s general manager (Image: Supplied)“We planted 40 trees including local heritage fruit species and 10,000 spring bulbs with local schools.

"Blickling also received a generous donation, which enabled the National Trust to purchase a portrait of Henry Hobart, the builder of Blickling, which we unveiled alongside new accessible interpretation.” 

READ MORE: 'Staggering' 58,000 penalties issued to Norfolk drivers in the last year

North Norfolk News: Blickling Hall, near AylshamBlickling Hall, near Aylsham (Image: National Trust Images/Andrew Butler)READ MORE: Dog-killing algae found in Norfolk Broads

Eleanor Akinlade, general manager of Felbrigg Hall and Sheringham Park, said: “Our Easter trail was a big success and it was wonderful to dress the hall for Christmas once again.

"The second-hand bookshop’s new location in the stable courtyard has proved to be a big hit and is helping to raise vital funds.”

North Norfolk News: Hilary McGrady, director-general of the National Trust. Hilary McGrady, director-general of the National Trust. (Image: National Trust)READ MORE: Action plan to help those affected by flooding after month's worth of rain in an hour

It comes as the trust has raised concerns over facing “political pressure” and its director general, Hilary McGrady, has defended its right to speak out against moves by the government such as scrapping ‘nutrient neutrality’ rules designed to protect waterways from pollution.