Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Jollies, Day 4: Castle Howard

For our final day we headed to Castle Howard. It's somewhere I've always wanted to visit after seeing it in Brideshead Revisited. However, I only really made the decision to come here the day before we left. Originally I'd just booked the two days in Whitby but, the closer the holiday got, the more it didn't feel like enough time to be away. It's really not like me at all to book something on the last minute but I'm so glad I did.

I think I've said before that visiting historic houses is one of our favourite things to do. Usually we prefer smaller, older properties but it's always interesting to visit the grander ones once in a while.

Building work began on the house in c.1700 and took over 100 years to complete. After 300 years it is still lived in and owned by the Howard family

While we were there, some of the rooms were out of bounds or were in the process of being dismantled as the BBC is filming a new 3-part drama to be shown at Christmas. It's an adaptation of Death comes to Pemberley by PD James and continues the story of Elizabeth and Mr Darcy six years into their marriage. The crew were still setting up the rooms though so we didn't see any of the actors.

This is the Antique Passage which is lined with busts and statues.

Is this one of the original Flower Pot Men :) (There's a YouTube clip here if you've never heard of them or just want to reminisce).

And this is the Great Hall. 'Wow' is really the only word to describe it.

Amazingly this is a replica dome as the original was destroyed in a fire in 1940. A Canadian artist, Scott Medd, was commissioned to recreate the original.

Thankfully, the other 18th century murals by Antonio Pellegrini were saved. This one is Air.

These are the Music Room and the Turquoise Drawing Room. The latter has been redecorated fairly recently and I absolutely loved the colour.

The stained glass windows in the chapel were all designed by Burne-Jones and made by William Morris' company. Really beautiful.

Back outside and after a walk down to the boat house cafe for a toastie, we headed to the Temple of the Four Winds. Apparently it was used as a place for refreshment and reading - don't you just wish? There are lovely views over the Howardian Hills.

To the right you can also see the Mausoleum which was built in the 1700s and is still used as the burial place of the Howard family.

I loved this view of the Castle with the Atlas Fountain in the foreground.

One of these zodiac signs is mine.

Last but not least we made our way into the rose garden.

Lovely old-fashioned roses scenting the air.

As we turned to leave, the first drops of rain of our whole holiday started to fall. The skies had been kind to us - not the glorious sunshine we're having at the moment but the best you can usually hope for in an English summer.

And that concludes the four days of our summer holiday. Thank you to those who stayed with me and posted some lovely comments. For the second week of my break we stayed close to home, pottering about in the garden, crafting, baking and occasionally venturing out. I'll be telling you about our day trip another time but I have a couple of other things to share with you first.


This post also sees me reach another milestone as it's the one year anniversary of my blog today. For a while I'd kept gardening and holiday journals, scrapbooks of theatre/cinema tickets and leaflets, logs of my quilting and crafty makes. I'd also started a 'happiness' book to post photos, newspaper clippings and anything else which made me smile. Starting a blog seemed like a natural extension of all these things. My target was to keep the blog going for at least 12 months to record a year in our life with all of its seasonal cycles.

Having achieved that, will I continue? To be honest, if I'd known how time-consuming it can be, I'm not sure I would have started. Time can still be a real problem but I know that if I hadn't started blogging, I wouldn't have discovered how much I enjoy the photography side and I probably wouldn't have done quite so much crafting, baking, making, and visiting: it's been a real motivating factor. I also love being part of this community and sharing your highs and lows. So, yes, roll on another year! I hope you'll continue to visit and share it with me. x


  1. Hi Jules
    I've just found your blog, bizarely by googling for something of my own to do with Arnside! We share a lot of common ground, I loved reading about your jollies to the East Coast, I was reading about Yorkshire Lavender just the other day, would love to visit one day.
    I love your photos, in fact, I really love your blog...good to "meet" you xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  2. Well done on your first year and I'm glad you will continue, time consuming as blogging may be. Castle Howard looks like a fantastic place to spend a day, it reminds a little of Chatsworth. I'd heard of it but never seen it until now - I actually always thought Castle Howard was just the name of a place/town/village! Now I know.

  3. Well done on a whole year of blogging, it is indeed a time consuming pursuit but worth the time for all the joy it brings. Saying that I am playing catch up at the moment so hadn't realised you were in Whitby one of my most favourite places to visit and Castle Howard is amazing ~ Sarah x

  4. Congratulations on your first year- glad you'll be keeping it up as I love reading about your adventures. Love the Castle Howard visit photos too, thanks for sharing :)

  5. Phew, so glad you are going to continue blogging, I love reading your blog and would miss it very much if you stopped! Congratulations on one year of blogging. Gorgeous photos of your break away, you have captured it beautifully.
    M x

  6. What a wonderful vacation! I enjoy seeing all your photos -- your experiences are so different from anything I can do here in the states. Blogging is time-consuming, but I agree it can be a good motivator:)

  7. Oh, I am glad you'll continue blogging, I would miss your posts! We visited Castle Howard a few years ago and I was blown away by it. The place is just stunning, it's a truly beautiful building and the grounds are equally stunning. x

  8. Congratulations on your 1st blog anniversary and I hope there will be many more to come.

    What a beautiful place, I remember watching Brideshead Revisited I always looked forward to it and never missed an episode.

  9. Hey Julie!
    Wow, what a fantastic post, I enjoyed your photos and what you had to say about them so very much.
    Also, my husband knows "The Flower Pot Men", if you mean the same thing that he does, he always used to sing the song to our son when he was little.
    Congrats on your 1st blog anniversary! Keep up the good work! xx