Just one more beautiful piece of English Heritage, before I move on. I’ve jumped counties this week, to Nottinghamshire and an Elizabethan country house, Wollaton Hall, dating from the 1580s. The sturdy old entrance gate looks anything but welcoming but, beyond it, 500 acres of parkland wrap gently around this elegant house on a hill. Lime Tree Walk sweeps gracefully upwards, but I’m diverted by the activity down at the lake.
An aloof swan or two, some cheerful coots and a waddle of ducks glide around the lemon and white water lilies, on a well nigh perfect summer’s day. The lake, just big enough to consume an icecream as you walk around it.
The park is also home to herds of Red and Fallow deer, some of whom astonished me by treading nonchalantly across the adjacent golf course. It must be a common occurrence, for the golfers appeared unperturbed.
There are formal gardens too, out of reach of the deer, but Wollaton is best known as Nottingham’s Natural History Museum. I’m really not fond of stuffed animals, but had to venture inside the hall out of curiosity. I was glad I did. In parts it was very beautiful.
It being the summer holidays, the hall was full of distractions for children. My daughter, long past childhood but a child at heart, still likes to twirl a bat cape alongside Bruce Wayne. Batman Forever! Wollaton regularly hosts events, and has been used as a film set on several occasions, understandably looking at this staircase. There appeared to be dinosaurs in residence, too.
I was interested to read of the behind the scenes tours available at the house, including a ‘descent to the depths’ to discover the Tudor Kitchen and the Admiral’s Bath! I averted my eyes from much of the taxidermy, but stopped to read Len’s story, and some history of the hall.
You can also access the roof for a closer look at the Pavilion Towers. Or how about a Bat Walk, or ghost tour? There have to be a few skeletons in the cupboards around here, wouldn’t you think?
We had some ace cake eaters in our company that day. Sampling is a public service, after all. Fortunately standards were met in the Courtyard.
Within the courtyard I also found something quite fascinating- an ancient knitting machine, on loan from the Framework Knitters Museum at Ruddington. All in all, a very satisfying afternoon out.
And there you have it! A bundle of very happy memories from an English summer.
Time to share this week’s walks. You have to admit, there’s variety here. And if you want to add something of your own, you know where to find me. Jo’s Monday walk explains it all. Join me here any time.
Let’s start with Debbie. I remember this place as being wonderfully atmospheric :
What is it about Cornwall that makes its gardens so beautiful? Jude might know :
More colourful characters from Janet this week :
Wonder what Jackie’s been eating?
Stroll round ‘Kyoto’s Kitchen’ with Lady Lee :
Irene takes us to a beautiful place :
Step by step, Cathy crosses Northern Spain, meeting a few characters along the way :
And I made a new acquaintance in Marsi. The views are stupendous, but you need to be fit!
I’ve been back in the Algarve for 3 weeks now, settling into a rhythm of sorts. I hope you’ll hang around to enjoy it with me. Take care, all!