Tuesday, April 12, 2011

An Old North Country - English - Home (just for a change!)

Just back from a week in England, reminding myself of how many of my roots are still firmly embedded in the North Country. We had a couple of nights in very comfortable self catering accommodation in a small and highly picturesque Cumbrian village called Orton, but it was when we were walking through the village that we saw the above fascinating house and barn. The first time we saw it was at twilight on a misty, murky night, and it looked exceedingly ghostly. The next morning, however, the sun came out, and I could take some pictures. The date above the door reads 1604, but the house looks Elizabethan and I suspect that the date records some kind of rebuilding or alteration. This is Orton Old Hall, (as opposed to the Jacobean Orton Hall, which was where we were staying) better known as Petty Hall, after one of the families which fell heir to it, some time in the 1600s. The building is stunningly beautiful - even the glass in the windows looks as if it might date from 1604 or earlier!
Later that day, we discovered this waterfall, about mid way between Appleby and Orton. Driving across open moorland, between the two places, we paused to breathe in fresh air. The sky above the moorland was loud with skylarks - a bird I don't hear too often these days, even in the part of rural Scotland where we live. It reminded me of all those days with my mum and dad, when I was a little girl, spent walking and picnicking on the Yorkshire moors, not a million miles from this place. If I could ever bring myself to leave Scotland, I think it would only be to go back to Yorkshire or somewhere nearby. Somehow, the North Country always feels like home.

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