Have you remembered it’s Mary Stewart Reading Week this week? I hope to have a review of Stormy Petrel for you later in the week, but today I wanted to share some pictures I took on Saturday.

We drove up to Cragside near Rothbury in Northumberland as they were offering free admission as part of this year’s Heritage Open Days. We had been before but not for a long time and as there’s so much to see there we thought it would be worth going again. Cragside was built in 1863 and was the home of the Victorian engineer Lord William George Armstrong. It was the first house in the world to be lit by hydroelectricity, generated by water from the lakes on the estate.

This is the view of the house from the Iron Bridge at the bottom of the rock garden:

Cragside 1

Another view of the house surrounded by trees:

Cragside 2

A carving inspired by the mythical Green Man:

Cragside 3

The kitchen:

Cragside kitchen

Lord Armstrong’s Billiard Room:

Cragside billiard room

The study (the globe on the left is an art installation forming part of an exhibition):

Cragside 5

Sorry about the quality of the interior pictures; the rooms aren’t very brightly lit and I haven’t mastered the settings on my new camera yet.

Did you do anything interesting at the weekend?

19 thoughts on “Cragside

  1. Leander says:

    What a beautiful house, Helen! It’s funny: the architecture doesn’t quite look English. There’s something almost Germanic about the half-timbered turret. I see it’s owned by the National Trust so presumably the family aren’t there any more; but just imagine living there!!! And what a lovely thing to do at the weekend. I always intend to take advantage of these Open Day weekends but always end up missing them for one reason or another 🙂

    I spent the weekend down in Sussex at the Goodwood Revival dressed in ’50s costume… so something slightly different there too.

    • Helen says:

      The architect who designed it (Norman Shaw) described it as Free Tudor, though it seems to be quite a mixture of architectural styles. It’s very impressive when you look up at it from the grounds and see it in its dramatic setting on the rocky hillside!

  2. jessicabookworm says:

    I didn’t do anything as interesting as you. Thank you for sharing these lovely photos. Sounds like somewhere I would really enjoy visiting too.

    I haven’t forgotten its Mary Stewart Week but I am behind so will hopefully make some good progress on Wildfire at Midnight today!

  3. Charlie says:

    Incredible! Perhaps the view from below makes it look better, but the exterior is fascinating and varied. I’m hoping to read Stormy Petrel too, so I look forward to your review.

  4. Jo says:

    That looks a great place to be in the middle of a raging storm. I can imagine ghostly sounds whilst I was sat by the fire reading!!

    Lovely photos. You have given a good taster of the place. As part of our Heritage Open Days was the chance to go and look round the prison, but all the places went before it was advertised. Hoping they do it again.

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