Mistaken Identity

Two days after seeing the Chapter House stairs in Wells Cathedral and mistakenly recognising them from "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves", I ventured to another county and a setting that I was certain had appeared in the film.  Perhaps I should make clear at this point that I'm not an obsessive following in the footsteps…

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Hackneyed?

On my short exploration of the parts of England that I don't usually reach I eventually arrived at Hackney, and Sutton House.  Now Hackney is not just a place-name, without the capitalisation it is defined here as Middle English: probably from Hackney in East London, where horses were pastured. The term originally denoted an ordinary riding…

666 is no longer alone*

* Genesis - Supper's Ready   People attach special significance to certain numbers whether they're religious, freemasons, or just seeking the advantage of a little luck.  Depending on which sources you read, any number from 1-25 (and many more beyond that including the number of the beast in my title) has special meaning in the bible.…

“You’ll know it when you see it!”…

...is how I referred to the difference between baroque and rococo when discussing decoration with one of the National Trust volunteers at Claydon House in Buckinghamshire.   I'm afraid that the same does not apply to you dear reader as I shall explain. For nearly four centuries this has been home to the Verney family,…

Unusual Garden Ornament

The Hoares of Stourhead didn't just go in for the grandiose.  The house is surrounded by some perfectly traditional lawns and shrubberies, and whilst the walled garden doesn't bear comparison with that at Wellington it features some colourful blooms. Even the ancient trees around the hall impress, though not with the same degree of delicacy.…

Wait ’til they get a load of this*

*apologies to Mr Nicholson's Joker for the bastardisation! The first stop on my summer excursion was Stourhead in Wiltshire, site of a Palladian Manor House built in the 18th Century.  I'll write about that house and its walled garden in a future post, but coming so soon after my visit to Studley Royal and the…