Friday, 22 September 2017

Calke Abbey - #3 - decay, decoration, details

When the National Trust took over Calke Abbey thirty years ago, the estate had been neglected for years. Buildings were in desperate need of repair, but beyond making them safe for visitors, the Trust have done very little to them, instead preserving the house, stables and garden buildings pretty mush as they were. Decay has its own strange beauty though ...

In the gardeners' store rooms and potting sheds it looks like someone will be back any minute to pick up their tools and carry on work...

... while the stables house a collection of old machinery and other 'junk'. After all, who thought a broken window needed to be kept?

On the other hand there's the most wonderful attention to detail - these ornamented brackets, with flowers, birds and strange water creatures, were part of the guttering and drainpipe system, not just on the main house but also on the stable block and boiler rooms in the gardens.

So many little details like this are so easy to miss. Who would ever have actually looked up and noticed the decoration at the top of this drainpipe?

Caught, Sleeping Beauty like, in a time warp, Calke is definitely a strange and fascinating place.

Other posts from this visit to Calke Abbey - #1 - flower gardens
                                                                       #2 - fruit and veg

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