About us

About us

About us

Founded in 1925, we are a thriving visitor destination and charity supporting learning in arts, ecology and social justice, set on a beautiful 1,200-acre estate in the South Devon countryside. 

Throughout our history we have drawn leading artists and thinkers including Bernard Leach, composer Igor Stravinsky, cellist Jacqueline du Pre, musician Ravi Shankar, playwright Bernard Shaw and environmental activist Vandana Shiva.

Today, we are:

Schumacher CollegeDartington Arts School, and Research in Practice

a social-enterprise hub for like-minded organisations and charities

a place for nature with range of conservation, agroforestry and regenerative food-growing projects.

a creative community with a year-round programme of art and craft short courses, theatre, music and dance events as well as a wide selection of films at the independent Barn Cinema.

We are also an award-winning destination with woodland walks, riverside trails, cafés, and restaurants and family-friendly activities.

What we do


Our legacy of progressive education continues to inform our learning programme: from our wide programme of short courses in ecology, arts and crafts, to our transformative higher education programmes.


Our arts and cultural events attract audiences from around the world and encourage social change, learning and experimentation.


Our estate, home to innovations in agriculture and architecture, is a place to build communities and the ecosystem that sustains them.

Social justice

Respecting the rights of individuals is at the core of the original Dartington Experiment.

Our history: Meet the Elmhirsts

The Dartington Experiment began in 1925, when Dorothy and Leonard Elmhirst bought a crumbling estate and began to explore how a place could change the world – attracting some of the greatest artists, educators and political philosophers of the 20th century in the process. Important British institutions – including the NHS and the Arts Council – emerged, and ground-breaking experiments in land use, farming and education took place.

The Elmhirsts understood that the world and its people are complex. There are many sides to every story and to every human being. We need environments that encourage our whole being to flourish, in connection with nature and each other.

Dorothy and Leonard Elmhirst

Our people and governance

Image from a Summer School & Festival course. Photo credit: Kate Mount


Work with us


News & blogs

Stories and features


Annual Reports

And financial statements


Our team

Leadership & Trustees


Sign up for our emails

Password must contain at least 8 characters.
I confirm I am happy to receive marketing emails from The Dartington Hall Trust, containing news, events and special offers. I understand that in creating an account I am agreeing to the Terms and Conditions for this website. I understand that I can change my preferences at any time by visiting My Account.
Previous Next
Test Caption
Test Description goes like this

Pin It on Pinterest