Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Chastleton House - Posting one; the outsides and the problems with entry. Read this first before setting out.

Chastleton House has no tea room. What? How can that be? What manner of madness is that in a National Trust property in the middle of nowhere?
But fear not dear reader, all is not lost. One cannot go careering around the English countryside without tea...it's a well known law of life, and the neighbouring Church, despite early objections to it not being "Churchy enough" have seen the way of profit and new roofs and donations to community aid. Local WI and other volunteers now man (woman, it has to be said) a tea area amongst the gravestones and sell tea and cake at £2.50 a go.

And very delightful it is to sit in the sunshine amongst the departed eating homemade cake and tea from water boiled in the vestry. If the traveller wants to sample my ideal of English life, this is probably a near perfect example.

Proof positive on my enjoyment!

 We found a tree in the churchyard, with this bottle buried in it's trunk. (just right and below the centre of the photo)

A close up of the bottle.

Chastleton House itself has timed tickets for admissions, and these sell out very quickly because visitor numbers are restricted.  On our way out, we saw a notice pinned to the gate that said the house was full. If you'd travelled a long way expecting to gain entry, unfortunately you would have wasted both your time and money. Do check before setting off, by giving them a ring and see if you can't pre-book a ticket for a private viewing.  The National Trust need to do a bit better on this.

 The tickets, being timed, mean that you could have to wait a couple of hours before admission (we had to wait 1 1/2 hours) so after tea, there are only the gardens left to fill this time. 

They are pretty, but not spectacular, and there is a croquet lawn which looks as if it's available to use, though there were no notices to this effect.  We sat on it and sunbathed!

Interesting topiary and lovely views into the surrounding countryside.

There are doubtless various walks around the fields next to the house, but not everyone wants to walk or is indeed capable of doing so, so bring a book and pray that it isn't raining.

More about the house itself in the next posting.

1 comment:

  1. Thank goodness for tea and commonsense people!

    I have missed taking these blog trips with you Annabel, (I have been sooooo busy!)and I always look forward to seeing what interesting places you've been visiting!