Monday, 11 April 2011

A Lovely Meet-Up

On Friday, a friend from the Brainfog forum visited us with her parents and godmother – she is on holiday from the north of England for the weekend, and we agreed we simply must try and meet up while she was here. They arrived in time for lunch so we all went out together to our local pub and had a great lunch together, and then we took them all to Dartington Hall (my favourite place in the world, I think!).

The weather was perfect all weekend, which I was so pleased about, so that they could see Sunny Devon at its best! All the blossoms are out, and although not all the wild flowers are out yet, it was all looking gorgeous.

Here are some of the photos we took (a mixture of mine and my hubby’s).

On our way to Dartington, we were told at the little steam railway station that a train would be arriving shortly, so we waited for it, as Tab’s dad was really keen to see it. Not only that, but while we were waiting, a classic car drove up and he was able to enjoy that too! Here are the piccies my hubby took:

01 Sunbeam Rapier at Staverton Bridge

04 Sunbeam Rapier at Staverton

02 Steam Train at Staverton

03 Steam Train at Staverton

After this we went on to Dartington Hall and had a good wander round. We took them into the hall itself, and then went round the gardens which are so beautiful at this time of year.

01 Blossoms Through the Gate

02 Iron Gate

Here we are all together (my hubby behind the camera):

07 With Tab and Family at Dartington

and me with Tab with her mum and godmother:

06 With Tab and Family at Dartington

and one of me on my own.

05 S at Dartington

Here are some more pictures of the gardens. These yew trees are known as the Twelve Apostles, and they overlook the mediaeval tilt yard.

20 The Twelve Apostles

08 The Twelve Apostles

Now some pictures of the sculpture known as Jacob’s Pillow, with the tilt yard beyond.

Jacob's Pillow

09 Jacob's Pillow

11 Jacob's Pillow

08 Jacob's Pillow Detail

Around the base of Jacob’s Pillow is some beautiful pavement made of small squares of stone set into the ground, which makes a gorgeous pattern.

07 Stone Paving

06 Stone Paving

I might make a texture overlay from this sometime.

There’s a very attractive curving path leading away from Jacob’s Pillow, below which is an equally attractive stone retaining wall.

14 Curving Path

12 Stone Wall

More interesting textures to have fun with!

The blossom trees are looking beautiful, as are the flowers which are starting to appear everywhere.

03 Blossom

10 Blossom

09 Primroses

10 Coniferous Branch

17 Helibore

18 Helibore Detail

19 Wild Flowers

15 Unfurling Fern

16 Unfurling Fern

13 Unfurling Fern

At the further end of the tilt yard there is a flight of stone steps leading to the upper garden, at the top of which is a stone fountain in the shape of two swans. In the summer this is a blaze of colour, being the azalea garden.

21 Steps Up to the Swans Fountain

Along the side of the tilt yard is a series of grass banks, which are covered with primroses at this time of year. There are now officious little signs telling people not to roll down these grass banks (health and safety or something!) but in the days when we were children, we were free to roll down them as much as we wanted and we never came to any harm, and neither was there any noticeable damage to the gardens! I must say every time I go, I still get the urge…

22 Primroses on the Tilt Yard Banks

Tab and her family really enjoyed their outing to this lovely place. I am hoping that they will send their photos when they’ve got home and we’ve exchanged email addresses. One day I’ll post some of the other photos I’ve taken here over the years, including the inside of the magnificent restored mediaeval banqueting hall which is now a concert hall and function room, and some of the other gorgeous places on the site. There is a complex of craft and gift shops nearby and I’ve taken some photos there as well. We did not have the time or the energy to go there as well on Friday!

23 Ancient Tree

All in all, a really lovely day. It was just great to meet Tab for the first time after several years of sharing posts with the others on Brainfog. Down here in Devon I don’t get to meet up with many members – we are scattered all over the country (with a couple of members the other side of the world – one in California and the other in Australia!) so it’s always a great joy when I do get the opportunity. Thank you, Tab and family, for making it such a special day!


  1. Looks like a wonderful place to visit! Pleased you had such a good day and great weather!

  2. What awesome pictures, and how fun it would be to see those sights! Looks like a marvelous day.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us Shoshi. I just love the pictures. God bless, Lloyd

  4. Shosh, I went to a wedding at Dartinton Hall about 6 years ago - didn't get enough time to really explore the grounds but they were beautuful.

    I only realised it was the same place when I saw your photos of Jacob's Pillow - have a photo of me posing by it :D x


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