Howick Gardens ~ February 2020

Sophie and I have visited Howick Gardens a couple of times prior to this post, in October 2015 and July 2017, but there’s something different happening there all year round, and this time we went to see the snowdrops. If you want the history of the gardens it’s in the first link there, if not, on with the pretty pictures! Although it was quite cold, we had a clear blue sky, and the snowdrops were out in force. I had my FujiXT2 + my 16mm fujinon & my helios lens, with me and my Canon EOS 100 FN with a…

Crook House & Gardens~Nov 2019~part 2

Part 1 HERE In spite of the weather being meh, we had a wander around the gardens. Not many flowers at that time of year, but nice to see some garden features,foliage & berries. So, a nice day out, the pictures as always are embiggenable with a click, and there are more photo’s of Crook House HERE Stay home, stay well, stay frosty and stay tooned for our next adventure!

Crook House & Gardens~ November 2019

On a rather miserable showery day, Sophie and I went off to Framwellgate in County Durham, to visit Crook Hall. As always, I will edumacate you firstly with…. The History Bit ☕️ 🍪 Crook Hall was built around 1217 and is one of the oldest inhabited houses in Durham City. The oldest part is an open hall, built in sandstone and with a Welsh slate roof. In the 17th Century the hall was extended forming a Jacobean manor house, and in the 18th Century a large brick Georgian house was appended to the Jacobean part. A fair hotchpotch that. Originally…

Wynyard Gardens – October 2019 – part 2

Part 1 HERE On the way back through the woods, we came across a few interesting bits and bobs. lots of mushrooms everywhere We got back to the formal gardens, no roses as it was late in the year, but a few bits of autumn colour. For more pictures there’s a full album HERE Sophie and I hoped to return here in spring and see the rose garden, but as the corona virus is taking hold in the country now as I write, I’m not sure if that will happen. Stay tooned though, still some more adventures to do!

Wynyard Gardens ~ October 2019

Sophie and I decided to visit Wynyard Gardens even though the flower season was over, we thought we’d do a recce and return in spring if we thought it worthwhile. The gardens are part of the Wynyard Hall estate, currently owned by Sir John Hall, a North East property developer ( and life president of Newcastle United Football Club). We only saw the hall from a distance as it is a very nice hotel now, but the gardens are open to the public all year round. The history bit . ( Cup of tea time 🙂 ) We’ll begin by…

Cragside – Rhododendrons June 2019

It’s cold here in the UK, the summer flowers have gone and the autumn leaves blown away, so let’s take a walk through the estate at Cragside and remember warmer times. “Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.” Rachel Carson   “Plant seeds of happiness, hope, success, and love; it will all come back to you in abundance. This is the law of nature”. Steve Maraboli “If you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere.” Laura Ingalls Wilder “Nature always wears the colors of the spirit.”…

Ormesby Hall ~ March 2019 ~ Part 3

See here for history and part 2 Most of the Stately Homes we visit have well-appointed kitchens which I duly photograph, and Ormesby Hall is no exception. But it’s much of a muchness and we’ve seen similar in previous posts. What was unusual at Ormesby was a fully kitted out laundry, so that’s what we’ll look at today. There’s no need for me to explain anything as that was done brilliantly by the info sheets in there.   Love that they call it WEE BEN, 🙂 so that was a nice surprise for Sophie and me as laundries are usually not…

Ormesby Hall – March 2019 -Part 2

PART 1 HISTORY HERE This week we are going to have a wander around the house. Sophie and I thought it was a bit like a tardis, as it seemed to have far more rooms than the outside appearance would have you think. You can see examples of  bold Palladian plasterwork and the more delicate neo-classical plasterwork ceilings in the drawing and dining rooms. Firstly the padded doorway.  This was installed by James Stovin Pennyman (1830-96) to help prevent the sounds of conversation disturbing the household  – he worked in York Lunatic Asylum so it’s possibly where he got that…

Ormesby Hall & St.Cuthberts Church March 2019 – part 1

Ormesby Hall is one of the National Trusts smaller properties. Barely a Stately Home, more of an historic house really, but Sophie and I don’t mind small, and the place was surprisingly interesting. Shall we commence with the history bit? (Rhetoric question, gotta be done 🙂 ) *Long post alert ~ get the kettle on* The History Bit The Estate of Ormesby has been around since before the Norman conquest, and possibly takes its name from Orme who was a tenant thereabouts registered in the Domesday Book.  The Hall has a long history with the Pennyman family and was acquired…