Sunday 30 October 2022

A Halloween Wedding

The skeletons are awakening at Lotherton Hall.

Waking from a long, long sleep.

Creeping from under the ground.

Be careful walking around the grounds or you might just lose your head.

We often visit Lotherton around Halloween. One of my past posts shows you a Spooky Halloween in the woods, but this year we decided to attend the wedding of  Lord Lesley and Lady Cynthia. They certainly arrived at the venue in style.

Come with me inside Lotherton Hall where we'll find out if it's death do them part or if there's too many skeletons in the closet.

There were quite a few unsavoury guests.

Other guests were a little more refined.

I think some guests were just taking advantage of the fire. No doubt it'll be back to hot water bottles when they go home, saving on the energy bills.

I'm not sure but I think this bird may have tweeted its last.

Lotherton always put on a fantastic Halloween event. This year, the Spooky Skeleton Trail is back throughout the estate, there's skeletons in the woods, the gardens, Wildlife World and the house. There's even the lost village of Lutherington. This year, there's also an after dark event, Skeleskare. The skeletons of Lotherton come to life! This event contains live actors, light and sound effects and is not suitable for under 8s or timid children. Eeek, what about timid adults.

Wednesday 26 October 2022

Halloween At Temple Newsam

It's getting rather spooky at Temple Newsam Farm and anyone visiting over the Halloween period may get more than they bargained for.

There's witches a plenty.

What's this?  Goblins in charge of the carriages, whatever next.

Make no bones about it, there's scary goings on in the laundry. Eeek, there's a mangled hand!

The Dairy. The skeletons are milking it now!

What a fun day out. This is just a taster of what's on offer, there's lots more to see too and the younger visitors were loving it when we were there.

Saturday 22 October 2022

Temple Newsam Home Farm

Following on from Temple Newsam Centenary Celebrations, included in our 6p admission fee was entrance to Temple Newsam Home Farm. I don't have to be told more than once that I can go and see some animals.

After Leeds City Council purchased Temple Newsam back in 1922, work soon began on creating a state of the art milking parlour at the Home Farm site with the aim of supplying tuberculin free milk to the schools and hospitals of Leeds. By the 1930s, a herd of pedigree shorthorns were producing 70,000 gallons of milk a year. Leeds City Council continued to operate this dairy until 1968. A decade later, in 1978, Home Farm opened its gates as a visitor attraction and has since been recognised as being one of the largest rare breeds centres in Europe. The Vaynol is a unique population of cattle. The herd was established in 1872 in Vaynol Park, North Wales, adjacent to the Isle of Anglesey. It was maintained there as a semi-feral herd until 1980 when it was moved to a series of locations in England. It has never existed in large numbers. The main herd now resides at Temple Newsam and a small subsidiary herd has been recently established in Lincolnshire as a precaution against disease outbreak.

There were quite a few animals to see in the farmyard and farm buildings. One of the barns houses guinea pigs alongside traditional farm animals.

Cute goats, more intent on eating than posing for photos.

More cute goats. They'd found a spot of sunshine and were taking a rest.

The pigs are my favourite bit of any farm. This is Mabel, a Saddleback.

We then went further afield into the paddocks where we saw more sheep.

There were more goats too.

Some were happy to stay by their shelter.

Just look at the apples on this tree. I wonder if they get fed to the animals.

The highlight of my day was seeing this lovely mummy pig and her piglets.

The piglets were running around playing with each other, and they kept coming over to the fence wanting us to scratch their backs. They even laid down for a tummy tickle. They were just like puppies.

This piglet is trying to eat a twig. They kept us entertained for ages.

Of course, a visit to Temple Newsam Farm wouldn't be complete without a visit to the donkeys, such gentle souls.

They weren't very interested in us on this occasion though, I didn't even get to stroke either of them.

Why is it that goats have to climb? Hmmm, no table manners!

What a lovely day out we had.

Tuesday 18 October 2022

Temple Newsam Centenary Celebrations

I've featured Temple Newsam many times on my blog. I grew up a stones throw away from the Tudor-Jacobean house and grounds, and we still live only a short car ride away.

Temple Newsam Estate was bought by Leeds City Council in 1922 for the princely sum of £35,000 and on Sunday, to celebrate the anniversary, general admission was taken back 100 years to 6p for adults and 3p for children. It's years since I've been inside the house so we decided to join in with the celebrations and take a look around.

There have been many residents of Temple Newsam over the years but the most famous is Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley, shown here with his younger brother, Charles. He was born at Temple Newsam in 1546 and went on to marry Mary Queen of Scots and father the future King James I of England. James was the first king of both England and Scotland. 

This is The Picture Gallery, the grandest room at Temple Newsam. It was designed to provide a spectacular room for entertaining and impressing guests. 

I nearly always forget to look up when visiting grand houses but then you end up missing so much. Just look at this beautiful ceiling.

The Chinese Drawing Room is notable for its spectacular Chinese wallpaper which was given to Lady Isabella Hertford by her close friend, the Prince of Wales, who became King George IV in 1820. This room became a ladies' drawing room in the early 1800s but prior to that, it was part of the original Tudor-era kitchens.

How's this for a light shade.

The harp and piano fit well in this room.

We so often walk at Temple Newsam and see the house from the grounds, it seemed funny to be looking from the inside out towards the gardens.

I enjoyed looking at all the portraits around the house, especially on the staircase. In hindsight, we should have bought a guidebook as only a few of the paintings had any information about who they were, I'm sure more details would be provided in the book.

Looking from the bottom of one of the staircases.

The dark room. This room allowed two servants to reside conveniently next to the adjoining apartment. The contrast in decoration and comfort between the servants' room and the rooms of those they served is quite apparent.

The Organ Clock stands at over 2.5 meters tall and is not only a clock but an automaton - it has an organ that plays music by itself, accompanied by a lively animated scene above the clock face. The clock is said to have once belonged to Marie Antoinette, the Queen of France, though this cannot be verified. The music and animated scene once played automatically every hour but in recent years, the clock has undergone extensive conservation work to maintain it in working order and so they're now manually triggered.

This is just a taster of some of the things which can be seen at Temple Newsam, there's far too many to cram into a blog post, but it's definitely worth a visit if you're in the area. My next post will show what we did after the house visit.

Friday 14 October 2022

Bakewell Wool Gathering

Bakewell Wool Gathering was celebrating it's tenth birthday this year. It's a yarn show which isn't all that far away from me, we visit Bakewell and its surrounding areas on days out, and as I hadn't visited this show in the previous nine years, I thought I would rectify that.

It's a much smaller yarn show than something along the lines of Yarndale, but with more than forty exhibitors, there was plenty to see. The £5 entry fee was much more reasonable than the larger shows too. We took Archie with us so Mick walked him by the river whilst I perused the show to my heart's content.

Afterwards, we had a wander around the town. Bakewell Agricultural Centre, where the Wool Gathering is held, is just across a small bridge from the carpark which we usually use, so we were almost in the centre of town anyway. Bakewell is the biggest town in the Peak District's National Park and is situated on the banks of the River Wye.

Padlocks, or lovelocks, have been added to the bridge since 2012 and there really is no space left to add more now, though plans are apparently underway by the county council to remove them so they're able to do routine maintenance work. There must be thousands there, they stretch right the way across the bridge on both sides.

It's a busy town but charming nonetheless. A lot of traffic passes through but there are lots of small streets and quaint courtyards.

I enjoy looking round the small independent shops and gift shops.

Quite a few of the shops are dog friendly too so we're able to look round even when we have Archie with us.

Bakewell is known for it's Bakewell Tart and Bakewell Pudding, and if you're not sure of the difference, take a look at my Bakewell Pudding V Bakewell Tart post which I wrote a few years ago.

There's many shops which sell this local delicacy around the town.

We noticed all these pigeons sat on the roof of a building near the river as we wandered back to the car. "But wait!", I hear you say. "We want to see what you bought at the Wool Gathering".

Just a small, modest haul.

I bought two yarn cakes from Wool is the Answer. They had so many gorgeous colourways, I could have bought more. These are Cinder Toffee and Summer Garden. The Ducky Darlings colourway is Winter Pink.

I don't knit many hats but I thought it would be fun to knit one for myself  and add this faux fur pompom. I bought some stitch holder cords, very handy when you want to try a garment on when you're half way through knitting it. You just slip the stitches onto the cords to make it easier than grappling with a half-knit garment while the stitches are still being held on the needles. I couldn't resist the Christmas Robin kit, it will look cute hanging from the Christmas tree. I did buy something else but that's for a gift so I shall keep that to myself.

There was a lovely bookshop in the town so I also treated myself to a couple of books to add to my classics collection. I've never read either of these before, The Jungle Book and Animal Farm.

It was a lovely day out, a beautiful part of the country with yarn involved too, what more could you ask for.