Monday, March 29, 2010

Elizabethan splendour

I've seen several documentaries featuring Hardwick Hall and I wasn't disappointed when I saw it in reality. One of the National Trust volunteers told the story of 'Bess of Hardwick' who built the house in Elizabethan times. She only lived in it about ten years and her descendants mainly used the house as a hunting lodge! But because of that the house was never modernised and remains Elizabethan in furnishings and fittings.

Because it's early spring the gardens have yet to bloom but the landscaping is spectacular of course and I imagine it is stunning in a month or two. All the lines of sight lead to or from the splendour of the house in a way that draws to the eye. We were intrigued by the ha ha wall and ditch that is invisible but keeps the sheep where they should be and think we might put one in at our farm :)

A feature is the very large herb garden and it must be a drawcard for the herb fanatics. In one corner of one of the gardens a chalkboard has been set up in a small building, mainly for the use of the numerous groups of children that get taken to the Hall on excursion. One of the entries for the 24 March amused me.

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