Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Belsay Hall A Guest Post By Unscripted Photograhy

Belsay is a firm favourite with many of my friends, you may remember a guest post from The Monkeyfooted Godmother talking about Belsay and English Heritage Membership. Well today we have the ridiculously talented Claire from Unscripted Photography who takes the most lovely photo's and is also Mum to Harry. Here she tells us about her day at Belsay

Last weekend NUFC played Sunderland. Faced with the prospect of being stuck at home alone with a slightly irritable toddler, whilst the hubby went to the derby, I thought the best thing to do would be: make the most of our English Heritage passes and head to Belsay Hall and Gardens.

Belsay is my favourite English Heritage site in Northumberland. It changes beautifully with the seasons. Sadly we were there slightly too early for the sea of yellow (is it me or are daffodils late this year?) but the place was still awash with snowdrops - ever so pretty.

Harry and I arrived just after 11.30. We grabbed our picnic, camera and Harry had his trusty binoculars and we headed off for the castle. Harry's got a thing for castles of late. Although I'm not entirely sure he knows what they are! He just likes the word.

I've decided that Harry is either well trained or the perfect photographer's child. In most cases you plonk him on step, he doesn't immediately run off or pull silly faces, instead he allows me to take the shot and then move on. Always shouting "hand" - I dread the day he doesn't want to hold my hand anymore.

So there we are wondering though the garden, it's rather magnificent as you walk through the old quarry. Harry loves all of the cubby holes and doors in which he thinks little people live behind.

We finally arrive at the castle and set up the picnic rug next to the gorgeous monkey tree. Luckily the rain holds off, but it turns chilly so we eat our grub as quickly as possible and head into the castle for some momentous games of peekaboo. The castle is rather lovely. The fact that the floors above have disappeared, but you can still see the fireplaces above, just suspended there, is rather quirky. Harry loves all of the interior windows that he can open and close. Then, I mention the word Hot Chocolate and like a flash he grabs my hand and we're off.

Wondering back through the quarry garden Harry's still going on about seeing a castle. See? Don't think he really knows what one is yet!

I marvel in the grandeur of the place and the trees perched precariously upon the tops of the ledges. Harry collects stones.

Harry decides he wants to have a nose in the Hall, which is beautiful, but sadly lacking furnishings, but that makes for the most excellent echo which Harry exploits to his upmost. Do Di Da - are his words of choice for shouting at the top of his lungs. Luckily we have the place to ourselves.

Following a small purchase of some gorgeous crocus bulbs, we head over to the little cafe. We are regulars here! The cakes are lovely, as are the hot beef sandwiches. Harry and I tuck into a slice of Victoria sponge and Harry enjoys a cheeky hot chocolate. As we talk about our adventures and all the stones he collected (what’s with that?) I notice that the boy looks decidedly exhausted and it’s time to head home.

I would highly recommend Belsay Hall and Gardens if you haven’t been already. The gardens both formal and the quarry are so lovely to explore - in any season. There’s also the woodland walk to enjoy, which we didn’t have time for on this occasion and in summer you can really appreciate the exotic plants in the quarry - it’s awash with colour.
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1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for the chance to guest post Karen. If any of your readers would like to see more photos from our day at Belsay, feel free to check them out here: