I have been to Rycote chapel on several occassions as my maiden name was Quartermaine. The first time I visited the lady who 'manned' the kiosk asked if I would like to sign a visitors book which she only allowed Quartermaines to sign - this would be around 1983 or so, as I was there with my son who was doing a school project on his ancestors. According to the lady on duty there were visits from hundreds of Quartermaines, many from far afield - Canada and the like. On subsequent visits that person was not there and the custodian knew nothing of the visitors book which was unfortunate as I think it could have been useful for family historians. The chapel never seems to change - it is quite beautiful and serene. My second husband and I had hoped to marry there but unfortunately, in spite of numerous requests by many people (who I assume have some link to it) this is not allowed.
I was brought up in Paris Hall, lived there throughout the 60s (remember the Bergls next door) and as children we would play in the overgrown gardens of Copped Hall, imagining the legendary secret passage that led to Waltham Abbey.
Stradey Castle opened its doors in March this year for the general public to view this beautiful historic house, I was fortunate enough to get there to do the heritage tour provided by the current owner Patrick Mansel Lewis and his wife Clare. The first part of the tour was around the garden with all the points of interest pointed out to us, beautiful views of the house were also appreciated from many points in the garden. The second part of the tour involved a steep climb to the top of a tower which gave us spectacular views of the Gower Coast. The House was the final part of the tour and is an on-going project, there are many examples of art and period furniture,it also feels like a family home with the current owners' family photos scattered everywhere. Finally tea in the dining room where the owners chatted with all the visitors, they seemed genuinely interested in what everyone thought of the Castle and were interested in ideas for this house to be preserved for future generations. I would definitely recommend a visit to this beautiful house and watch this space this is something special.
The gardens were looking lovely last week: a garden to re-visit throughout the summer to find out what's in bloom.
Enjoyed my visit to Shugborough enormously. Lovely house and gardens. Felt quite moved and rather melancholy seeing Patrick Lichfield's private apartment I slightly felt I was invading his privacy.
My wife and I were visiting from Australia and thoroughly enjoyed our vist to Dundonald Castle. It was one of the smaller castles we have visited and from afar looks very much a ruin, but to our surprise it still had so much to offer and to explore both inside and out.
The castle site is steeped in history from as far back as the Iron Age and our visit was made so much more interesting with a personal tour with the trust guide named Stacey, who enthusiastically brought the castle's history and past very much to life and made our visit so much fun.
Thank you so much and we will certainly spread the word to our friends in Australia that Dundonald Castle is very much worth a visit when visiting Scotland.
Many thanks Stacey (I hope we have correctly spelt your name) for your enthusiasm and hospitality.
Les & Naomi (Canberra Australia )
Maunsel exceeds all expectation! a superb wedding venue, which does not have the "wedding factory" feel of so many other venues we looked at, Maunsel has soul ..... and a little magic.
Superb wedding planners - full of enthusiasm and always willing to go "the extra mile" - combined with cheerful and happy service staff to provide a wedding day which ran so faultlessly that guests are still commenting! We could not have asked for more!
Quite simply: 5* A huge thank you to Sir Ben and his entire team, for making my daughter and son-in-laws' wedding day into the day of their dreams.
I visited Hellens yesterday with my family and a friend, and have to say it's one of the most interesting houses I have ever been to. It is an absolute treasure-house of wonderful paintings and artifacts which connect us with Britain's long past. We had a most enjoyable guided tour and I am already planning a return visit. It isn't very often that one visits somewhere with such a sense of history and yet feels so close to that story - not at arm's length as in some of the country's more Stately Homes.
Since 2000 over £500,000. has been spent on restoration of the chapel, in recognition of its importance in the development of Welsh Nonconformity. Contributors include CADW, the Welsh Assembly, the Historic Churches Preservation Society, the Heritage Lottery Fund, Caerphilly Council and the Weston Foundation. The Veolia Environmental Trust paid for a new slate roof, the original Meeting House (now the Vestry) refurbished for community use, and the famous graveyard improved giving safer access to the tombs and monuments of notable Welsh poets preachers and musicians.
Volunteers from the Gwent Wildlife Trust repaired boundary walls. Inside, the chapel's beauty has been restored with new plasterwork, and the long elegant windows show to effect Sir William Goscombe John's bronze plaque of the chapel's
first minister, the Rev. William Edwards, the famed bridge-builder.
Groeswen Chapel welcomes pilgrims and tourists alike. Since restoration the congregation has increased in size and vitality. Further information, and visits are available by contacting the Project leader and chairman of Trustees Peter
Jones (02920882245 or 07588501848) or June Evans (02920884018).
Visited Rufford Abbey on 25/3/12, easy access and plenty of parking, which was free on the day. The grounds are well kept and so is the lake, which had lots of wildlife,and we saw the odd rabbit/squirrel roaming about in the forest, and there were activities for the kids to join in. The old Abbey itself had seen better days, not much remaining but still interesting.
There is a nice cafe and a restaurant close to the Abbey and a souvenir shop at the far end of the lake.
All in all we had a good day out, as I said it was free to park on the day we visited, don't know if this is normal practice.
One of my favourite places to visit. Beautiful. A hidden gem. Well worth a visit.
My name is Ameileah and today I visited your farm and woods. I really enjoyed watching John cut the tree down, and I went to see the sheep and the cows. I really enjoyed my visit today 22nd March 2012. I have asked my Mummy and my Nanny if we can come on a visit to your lovely big house.
A real treasure, one of the Victorian seven wonders of Wales. Wonderfully cared for and cherished by the congregation. An amazing organ, recently restored and the casework repainted to the original design. Sadly there has been some recent liturgical re-ordering, unnecessary and already out of date. Well worth a visit, one step from heaven.
Fabulous day out, fun for all the family, England's Best fantastic HISTORIC war time Home of the ORIGINAL Code Breakers. I personally love it. My family and I go back time and time again and never tire of hearing our war time history being told. Thank you Bletchley Park for sharing your SECRETS.
Ty Mawr is a fabulous place, but not so much of a stately home - in its current state, at least. I believe it was a medieval hall house, but it is now a camping barn. You can stay there for a couple of pounds a night, but you'll need to take your own bedding, cooking equipment, etc. There's also a wonderful little cottage right next door – still basic, but definitely worth visiting. I’ve stayed there several times – with a group of friends, with my husband, with our two small children, and with another family with young children. It’s a fabulous base for a holiday, within easy reach of the mountains and lakes, several beautiful beaches, at least three steam railways, and the ice cream shop in Beddgelert! And it’s only about £25 a night, regardless of how many people are staying – and you can fit a surprising number of people under its fairly small roof; I think there are 10 beds/mattresses!
'Y Ty Cymreig' on S4C writes: Ty-Mawr, Nantmor is ... a truly rare survivor, being entirely built using the drystone technique. It is ... a true candidate for the ultimate Welsh house. There are also 19 records related to Ty Mawr in the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales.
I live there and it's great!
The garden surrounds the 13th century Priory, now a private dwelling house. It has fine herbaceous and rose borders, plus a long rockery to the front of the house with magnificent views over loch Etive.
Either side of the drive are mature trees, interesting shrubs and many spring bulbs. The soil is neutral, so it suits many different plants. The main highlights are the daffodils in April, scattered colour in May and June, some Rhododendrons and Azaleas, plus Prunus, Viburnum and other shrubs. The herbaceous borders are at their best in July and August and Roses peak around the end of June. There are plenty of shrubs with good autumn colour and the main herbaceous border continues to flower well into October. Next to the garden are the ruins of the old Priory chapel, currently in the care of Historic Scotland, it is open with the garden.
We visited the hall last year and went round with the guide, who made it all the more interesting, well done. We had a walk round the lovely gardens afterwards and bought a few plants for home, a very pleasant afternoon out thanks to the staff, who were very pleasant and knowledgeable.
I have a lovely time visiting strawberry hill. The house is quite something, I really liked the library. The room guides were very knowledgeable about the rooms, and I liked the pictures of what the rooms looked like throughout the history of the house. After visiting the house, I had a coffee and scone in the cafe, both very tasty! In the cafe I was visited by one of the resident cats of the house. All in all a very nice day out. I am planning on coming back for their jazz festival in June 2012.
My husband and I used to reenact in the Civil War Society and spent two weeks at Kentwell in 1981 on a living history fortnight, this was the year before we got married. It is often talked about by us to our two daughters and now four grandchildren! Very memorable experience, well worth doing if you can. It was a lovely setting and that was back then, no doubt even more stunning now, good luck to you all there.
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