I have popped over to Charlecote a couple of times this week, at both times the sky turned a little dark and I thought it would rain but amazingly it stayed dry for me. I did wonder if the sky was that colour to give a little more atmosphere to the week, well it was Halloween :)
I noticed lots of children running around excitedly trying to find the pumpkins on the 'Pumpkin Hunt' even found a few myself . The picture above was one I took on Wednesday from the top of the Gatehouse at around 4pm, the skies were dark from the weather but daylight was also starting to fail. When I got home and looked at the photos, I seemed to have a shadow on them....I realised they were actually ghostly figures! Has Charlecote got ghosts?? It is an old house so it is very possible..spooky goings on I think......Ok I lied but it's Halloween :):) Saying that, I did read a blog on the very same thing on Charlecote's page this week and found it very interesting. Here is the link
This was just as the Sun was coming down behind me lighting up the house but look at that sky, very spooky and no rain! I don't actually like this picture much but I wanted to show you the sky.
I love old photos and through researching my own family tree, have learnt to fix them so they look like new again. It's something that takes time but that I really enjoy doing. Some photos given to me to scan have been either slightly torn, creased or have other marks on them but they are very old photos, I try when possible to fix them. I guess my love of photography and history started years ago, sat in my Great Aunt's house in a village called Radford Semele just outside Royal Leamington Spa. I always remember as a little girl being allowed to fetch the box of old photos out. I wanted to know everything, who these people were? where were they when the photo's was taken? What did they do? Where did they live and what relationship were they to me? I remember doing this very same thing to my Grandmother too, she knew the look on my face and would say 'go on then, get the photos out' thinking back now, I probably bored them constantly with all the questions but I guess even back then, at such an early age, my love of Photography and History was there.
When walking around old houses, I always think about the history they have inside them and if only the 'wall's could talk' , what stories they would tell. There are some amazing rooms in Charlecote house. Just think how many people have worked in this big kitchen through the years, catering for the family but also for the estate,big parties and events.
I bet the staff in the old days weren't as happy in their work as this lovely lady.
I have far too many photos and far too much to say so I think I will have to finish the inside of Charlecote in my next blog .
My Great Aunt also loved History and knew so many stories about our family and about our very own history, but nothing was ever written down and unfortunately, she died before I could write it down. As a young child, I listened as though it was story telling time and loved it. It was only as I got older, I wanted to know if these stories were true and how much had been lost or changed as the stories had been passed on from generation to generation. It is these stories never the less, that started my interest in history and especially my own. As I have mentioned before, I was not born here in England but My Mother, Grandmother and all their line before them were. The English side of my family were quite easy to trace as they did not move very far. From Leamington Spa, I traced them to Radford Semele, then earlier to Offchurch and then back even further to Alveston and Tiddington, which for those who don't know, are just at the back of the Charlecote Estate. As you can see from the google map below, they didn't move far. Click on it to make it bigger.
Most of the family line is Godfrey, Wall and Davenport from Alveston and Tiddington in the 1700's and the 1800's. I do go back further but not on this line. Now it's been awhile since I researched the family tree but I do remember coming across a few entries in the old records as working at the 'Big house' or on the 'Estate' I wonder if they meant Charlecote? More research is needed I think! The picture below is of My Great Grandmother Emily Rowley nee Godfrey and My Great Grandfather Stanley Rowley. I think old photos are great, Emily's own Grandparent's came from the village at the back of Charlecote.
Back to Charlecote and half term.... It was a little strange this week, after the weeks before when the deer have been mostly over the other side of the river in West Park and the bucks being very active and jumpy, The Fallow Deer were very quiet this week and there were plenty of them walking about over the rest of the park and by the lake. I even had a couple of bucks standing guard at the gate as I left. It was quiet funny really, a member of staff or a volunteer I think, was walking up the main path towards the gate to go home and she had these two bucks walking with her, a little like body guards. Then as she left they stood there like bouncers, making sure everyone was leaving. I have added a couple of photos from that moment but excuse the quality as it was starting to get dark and I had already packed my camera away so they are just very quick shots but funny so worth adding. I did notice though, that one of the bucks looked a little worse for wear, too much fighting I think. I guess the rutting season really takes it out of them..or maybe playing at being bouncers at the gate did!
The two bucks escorting the lady to the gate
The bouncers at Charlecote Park :) I wouldn't mess with these!
Patrolling the gate
Yesterday I popped back to Charlecote for a short walk and a little fresh air and again the skies turned dark but again I was lucky, no rain. I was able to get some lovely Autumn shots of a couple of bucks sat in the Autumn leaves. Strangely they let me get closer than I thought and didn't move like they normally do. I was aware of the danger of going too close, especially as last week they were still very active and standing their ground but yesterday, they were not really moving much. I guessed they were all shattered after the Rutt, or maybe these were the losers as I did still see some of the bigger bucks strutting around a little on the other side of the river. It wasn't until I got the photos home and blew them up on my computer screen, that I saw how battered these poor bucks were. Some must have been in some really bad fights like the one below, guess if he was human he would have a very bad black eye. He looks like he has been in the wars a bit and he wasn't the only one. I know it doesn't like good but it is all part of natures and their mating cycle. I am just thankful humans don't have to fight each time they want to mate!
He did make a pretty picture though sat in the autumn leaves. I think everything looks so much prettier in autumn, so colourful.
Think he is telling me off here.
This white buck didn't look quite as bad as the other buck but they all looked shattered.
Grazing in the main park.
These sheep get everywhere, my daughter said they look like little cow's, guess it's the colour :)
A few other snapshots from half term,some does, bucks and sheep. I thought the next photo was cute.
I thought this buck looked very posh with his nose in the air!
Taking it easy after a mad few weeks.
Mother and youngster.
sheep up by the lake
Just over the river in West Parks orchard
Another deer sticking her tongue out to me, guess they don't like their photos taken.
That itch you just can't get!
I had to get on my knees for the next two shot's but I really like them.
The next blog explores inside Charlecote