I recently returned from traveling in England over an eight-week period. I didn’t blog on my trip because my WiFi connections were spotty at best. So I will start at the beginning, looking back on some of the highlights of my trip.
While visiting my friends in London I spent a day out exploring the manor house, Knole, now owned by the National Trust. Knole sits on a 1,000 acre park SE of Sevenoaks in Kent. It is an easy train journey from London. Knole ranks in the top five of the largest homes in England. The house itself occupies 4 aces of land.
approaching through the gates
For me, its most famous occupant was Vita Sackville-West, who went on to design the famous garden at Sissinghurst, not far from Knole. As a woman she was unable to inherit Knole from her father. It is something that caused her much grief and resentment.
Knole passed through many hands during the centuries beginning with Robert de Knole in the 1290’s. The house and land was given to Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset in 1547 at the start of his nephew Edward VI’s reign. When Somerset was executed it reverted to the crown. In 1560, Elizabeth I gave it to her rumored lover, Robert Dudley, but he returned it to her in 1566. At some point it was passed on to Thomas Sackville and his descendants have lived there ever since. In the long gallery you can view the portraits of past and current owners. Unfortunately the National Trust does not allow photos to be taken of the inside of the house.
You approach the house through a deer park that has been maintained for over 400 years. It’s a lovely walk up to the house.
I have visited this home four times and each time new rooms are open to the public. The house is always undergoing more restoration. Keeping the place dry and protecting the many paintings is of utmost concern of the National Trust.
detail of one of the many downspouts on the house
view of the clock tower
a view from the tower
creatures on the roof
slit windows, perfect for using for your bow when you want to shoot your enemy
the orangery taken with my Lensbaby Trio lens
saying goodbye to Knole until we meet again
I know I will return again. The house is only open a few hours each day and I still have much to explore.
(I’m waiting for 30+ rolls of film to be developed, taken with my pinhole camera and a Widelux panoramic camera. I will post those photos after I have time to scan them all.)