Sunday, 1 March 2015

A visit to Pemberley

Saturday 28th February 2015

Once again the weather figured large in our considerations regarding travel.

We wanted to be back in Bollington by Monday at the latest, but the forecasts of high winds and rain at varying times gave us no option but to leave Marple today.

It didn't start as a particularly friendly day with misty drizzle about - this I found out on my journey down into the town for Diane's paper; having already made her coffee, she was able to occupy herself with Facebook, reading blogs and viber until I returned.

One other reason for leaving when we did was that the National Trust property of Lyme Park at High Lane was on the way - just a mile from the canal and was open; and the moorings were only 2 miles on from where we were.

We cruised past Goyt Mill - an eagle eye out for anymore fruit tossers - but as it was Saturday, I guess they must be all plum tuckered out.
2nd red door up - no sign of any tossers on
a Saturday

The moorings were reasonably full but we managed one on the end even though we were out a bit from the bank - no problems as we were not staying the night.

Then the walk up to the property - just 1.1 miles - but at one of the bus stops Diane contemplated catching the bus but decided not to; only for one of the ladies waiting for another bus to advise that once there it was a further mile to the house - this was becoming a bit of a trekking expedition - perhaps we should have engaged some of the locals to act as porters.
The main entrance - the cottage would do us

Anyway, it was a leisurely walk to the front gates, despite what the management of the boat might say, but I have to say I was thankful that they had a courtesy bus operating between the carpark and the entrance, so we only had to wait a few minutes for someone to pick us up.
We were a bit early for opening time (11am), but this we knew and also the cafe was open which enabled us to have a cuppa before seeing the house.

Just the stables block up there, mate!
Why this house? Well it usually doesn't matter to us, if there is a National Trust property on the way and it is open we will stop off to see it and get maximum use from our membership; but this was a bit more special for Diane - it was used as the stately home of Fitzwilliam Darcy called Pemberley in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice - the version with Colin Firth appearing out of the lake.
I suspect that Diane was expecting that the man himself would appear in person with clothes all a-dripping.
Not actually the tradesman's entrance - just not the front of the building

This was/is the main entrance - could do with a bit of  high
pressure water cleaning

Fortunately the sun made a welcome appearance and we walked a bit further up to see the house.
Unfortunately any chance of taking photos inside the house were knocked on the head, so nothing there....
...but she slyly took one photograph

As usual with houses of this outward grandeur, the interior also were impressive, with most of the decorations being from the original owners.
Again it just amazes me the extent of the wealth that was held by individuals in the past by virtue of an hereditary connection.
One item of interest was the Caxton Missal - printed in 1487 - one of only two surviving copies. Apparently it was printed in France, because they could do a two-colour print. Our latin was not good enough for a translation.

The impressive Long Hall, the Dining Room and many other rooms were worth the effort, but for Diane, she wanted Mr.Firth emerging from the lake in front of the house - sadly he was not in today and then she was told that the lake out front wasn't the one that was used anyway - they had a spare lake further back in the property.
Nice to be able to have that additional one in case the first choice is not good enough.
Madam in the orangrie....

....with the Madman

Now this is the more familiar sight - the building I mean

a selfie by the lake 

It was Colin Firth's day off, so the body-double had to stand -
hope you can see the striking similarity
After seeing all of the house that we could as well as the orangrie and some of the immediate grounds we had to be heading back - there was still the matter of a boat trip which included water and diesel.
The courtesy bus picked us up from outside the house and we then only needed to walk from the main entrance, back to Ferndale - this was a bit easier as it was all downhill.

So off we were again, the weather showing the signs of what we knew would be coming our way - it was a bit colder and a bit more windy.

Stopping only at Higher Poynton for a top-up of the diesel and water tanks we continued on to Bollington, taking the last mooring, just one along from where we were previously - there must be a small shelf where we are as we need to be out just a bit, but we are back.

7 miles
YTD: 87 Miles, 25 Locks, 1 Tunnel, 2 Lift Bridge, 5 Swing Bridge
Totals: 2981 Miles, 2146 Locks, 99 Tunnels, 36 Lift Bridges, 157 Swing Bridges


  1. You look a tiny bit like Colin Firth, but he would probably win the dripping wet shirt competition. Yes, I'm another who swooned over that scene - be still, my beating heart!

    1. Thanks Jenny
      there was of course the distinct disadvantage that the temperature was hovering around 7-8C without the real feel factor, but thank you for saying "a tiny bit" - that will do me