After a manic week and work and the sad news of Robin Williams death I figured we could all do with reading something a bit more positive. So here’s a blog about one of my all-time favourite places – Towneley Hall.
Towneley Hall is set in Burnley, with expansive gardens, art galleries and golf club.
Owned by the Towneley family, the house was lived in until 1902 until it was bought by the Burnley Cooperation and opened to the public in 1903. You can learn more about the history of the house here.
I went just over two weeks ago, and baring this blog in mind I did take some photos but unfortunately the sun paired with the rubbish camera on my phone meant that many of them were really not worth sharing, so the images are from the Towneley Hall website.
I took my niece along who is 9 and we spent a happy three hours there. The gardens are perfect for rambling through with the dogs with memorials and wooden sculptures hidden along the paths. Plus there is a (practically) permanent ice-cream van; and not just any old ice-cream van, but one that serves sparking ice-cream!
The house itself has been made more child-friendly in recent years, with interactive areas and a mouse-hunt. The mouse-hunt in itself is worth borrowing a child to take there (with the child’s parent’s permission, obz) though as we soon discovered the ‘packs’ they offer you at the start are more of a hassle than anything.
Within a metre and a half of the ticket desk, our backpack had already collapsed and I had to sulk back to the desk, broken microscope in hand.
While the art gallery has the standard (but brilliant) art you would expect from a house like this, it also has a novelty piece I quite liked.
Looking at what seemed to be an odd chandelier reaching from the floor up to near the ceiling I glanced at the plaque, only to find it had been made out of all the lost earrings found in Towneley Hall, so if you like new installations – or miss-matched earrings make sure to search this out.
Also while you’re in the chapel keep your eyes peeled for a gruesome discovery. I won’t spoil it and say what (although I really want to) but needless to say, this little artefact was found behind a wall and presumably before that on a person.
I love visiting stately homes, possibly because we all now it’s inevitable I’ll be seeing out my days in one – here’s looking at you Prince Harry.* Can you suggest any others?
*But seriously, if you know/are Prince Harry…Call me maybe?