Five Photos, Five Stories: Day 4

I’ve been invited to take part in the “Five Photos, Five Stories” challenge by Jude of Travel Words. The challenge is quite simply to “post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge”.

My five photos are from our recent Lake District holiday. The weather wasn’t very good so we visited a lot of houses. I’m taking them in chronological order and asking “Who lived there?”

Wray Castle – who lived there?

Wray Castle

This neo-Gothic pile, believe it or not, was built in the 1830s as a retirement home for just two people, James and Margaret Dawson, a wealthy couple from Liverpool – and their army of servants, of course. Although very different from Allan Bank, Wray Castle has several things in common with it – famous tenants (after the Dawsons died it became a holiday let and was rented by Beatrix Potter’s family); acquisition by the National Trust (1929) followed by a chequered pattern of use; and being opened to the public without contents or period decoration. My favourite part was the old servants’ quarters where I learned that the laurel hedge outside was built to screen the formal lawns so that James and Margaret and their guests could not be seen by mere servants, and the windows in the maidservants’ bedrooms were originally only 3 or 4 inches wide for the same reason. I don’t think I’d have liked James and Margaret very much.

As before, if you’d like to do 5 Photos 5 Stories let me know in the comments and I’ll give you an “official” nomination.

I’m continuing to feature other British-based bloggers instead of nominations: two today, both newish and both writing about Scotland. Paul at Through the Lens seems to visit the same places that I do. One of these days, we’ll walk past each other. Maybe we already have! The same goes for Scott at Great Glasgow Architecture – if I ever do another A-Z Challenge on Glasgow his posts will be a source of inspiration.

Last day tomorrow!


23 thoughts on “Five Photos, Five Stories: Day 4

  1. clicksclan May 21, 2015 / 13:58

    Clearly they didn’t think much of their servants. I’m not sure I would’ve coped very well as a servant way back then.

    It does look like a striking building though. I love the idea of living in a castle. 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh May 21, 2015 / 14:09

      No, I don’t think any of us would! It must have been a very hard life.


  2. joylovestravel May 21, 2015 / 14:35

    Love the story behind this place Anabel – finally somewhere we’ve visited as well!! We cycled to and from the house along the shores of Windermere and spent a lovely afternoon there. We all enjoyed exploring the house and grounds – so much hands-on stuff for children and the most stunning setting.


    • Anabel Marsh May 21, 2015 / 15:43

      Yes, it was great for kids. We walked round the grounds (muddy!) and saw lots of people cycling too. More on the interiors and parks next week!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Paul May 21, 2015 / 21:35

    Another smashing post Anabel! Thanks for the mention, its very much appreciated 😊
    I think that these people forget that without the “hired help” that they would be washing and cooking themselves! Honestly, some people!
    This building does remind me a little of Balloch Castle.


    • Anabel Marsh May 21, 2015 / 21:43

      And you still get them, the self-made men and women who forget all the “little people” who put them where they are.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Paul May 21, 2015 / 21:48

        It costs nothing to be polite. I never understand why people can’t take a moment to show some appreciation and consideration towards others. Treat others as you wish to be treated yourself.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Heyjude May 21, 2015 / 23:47

    Oh, wow, this is some interesting building. I’d like to have a peek inside this one. James and Margaret Dawson obviously had visions of grandeur!


  5. Birgit May 22, 2015 / 01:17

    This is a great looking “castle” but I would have wanted to boot James and Margaret up the wazoo


  6. jazzfeathers May 22, 2015 / 21:24

    I don’t think I would have liked James and Margaret either… but their home is gourgeous 🙂


  7. shropshirewalk June 14, 2015 / 21:56

    I used to live there! From 91 to 95 I lived in Wray Castle. Probably my favourite place on the planet. Will be there next week for my 40th!


      • shropshirewalk June 15, 2015 / 11:40

        Yes, I moved there as a 16 year old and left 4 years later. I consider myself lucky to have lived there! Thank you too!


          • shropshirewalk June 15, 2015 / 12:42

            It was when it was the Merchant Navy Telecommunications training College (1958-1998), and a lot of the rooms were used as accommodation.


            • Anabel Marsh June 15, 2015 / 12:45

              Ah, right – I read about that and saw the steering wheel. A beautiful setting to live in.

              Liked by 1 person

  8. shropshirewalk June 14, 2015 / 21:58

    I used to live there. From 91 to 95. My favourite place on the planet probably. Will be there next weekend for my 40th.


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