The eccentric first Earl of Bristol was passionate about Italy and envisioned building a stupendous monument to folly which led to the creation of this remarkable Rotunda.
We've been before and seen the wonderful collection of paintings, portraits, fine sculptures and furniture. But it was the newly established "Ickworth Lives" project which took our fancy. The Rotunda basement has been restored as it would have been at the turn of the century and gave us a sense of what life was like for servants and estate workers up until the 1930s.
First, the kitchen which was the hub of the household and where the cook would have produced meals for the upstairs household and stream of many guests as well as those living downstairs.
where shoes were meticulously cleaned for their owners in the adjoining scullery.
I do believe that is a knife sharpener on the table too.
Possibly the Butler's bedroom
and the Housekeeper's parlour
I have to own up to the fact that I learnt to type on a typewriter not dissimilar to this, way back in the 1960s - to the tune of 'William Tell'. Now that really dates me!
I learnt to sew at school on a hand sewing machine like this too.
The grounds were stunning
and the formal gardens beautiful
But all too soon it was time to leave.
We went out to dinner in the evening with our children and grandchildren to a restaurant called The Boatyard in Leigh on Sea, where we sat overlooking the local fishing boats moored in the harbour and the River Thames beyond. I was thoroughly spoiled with some wonderful pressies, cards, flowers etc and enjoyed my day tremendously.
Just when I thought that things couldn't get better - I had a wonderful surprise this morning - I passed my exams!! Woohoo! Such a lovely feeling and now can't wait to start my final year in September - studying Renaissance Art. (Remind me of that when I'm tied to my computer this winter and complaining that I've too much to do!!).
See you soon